Friday, July 10, 2009

Tap That All Night Long

Do you know what one of the stupidest things in the world is, Company? Bottled water. It makes no sense at all and benefits no one except the people who are bottling it. Yet people, very stupid people to be sure, buy bottled water like it is going out of time. And 102% of those people have something in their homes called a faucet. And you know what comes out of the faucet? Water that has been cleaned and filtered, and they've even added chlorine and flourine to help your teeth. How about that? Oh, and one more thing: you've already paid for it. So why then are you paying extra for water in bottles?
So one can see just how ridiculous this whole bottled water fiasco is. And apparently you are not alone, because I guess there has been a backlash about bottled water. It actually costs a lot of money to haul that water around in a truck, all those bottles are made out of plastic which are made out of oil, and all those bottles end up in landfills lying around for three-hundred years. So, with all that being said, people are starting to sort of rise against the bottled water thing, which is good because it is about time we come to our senses. Just get a reusable water bottle and fill it from your tap people.
Anyway, an entire town in Australia, nestled somewhere in the green hills of New South Wales and known by the VERY Australian name of Bundanoon, has decided to ban the stupid and wasteful practice of drinking bottled water. Actually, you can still drink as much bottled water as you would like, but if you sell it you are in deep shit. The residents of the town voted overwhelmingly to ban the sale of bottled water in the village and became the first municipality in the entire world to do so. At one of the most heavily attended meeting in the history of this community of 2500 people, 350-ish people voted in favor of the ban while only two people voted against it. One town resident, who will remain nameless, voted against the ban because he thought it would make more people turn to sugary drinks. The other "no" vote was cast by a representative of a local water bottling union. as would be expected.
Now, I sort of told a lie in that you aren't really in deep shit if you sell bottled water in Bundanoon, or "Bundy" as it is sometimes known, because while the residents voted this ban into effect they did not give it any teeth. In fact, they did not vote any sort of penalties for those who violate the ban. Proponents, however, don't seem to think that is a problem as the ban has been supported by most of the shopkeepers in town.
The townspeople and those who drafted this new law are not unsympathetic to those in town who sell bottled water, however. As a way to help make up for profits lost from the sale of bottled water, organizers have suggested that stores sell reusable bottles for about the same price, which can then be refilled for free at municipal fountains specially set up for this program or they can buy cheap filtered water that is kept in the stores, which sort of defeats the purpose I guess but whatever. You can't win them all I guess.
It IS important to note that, while Bundanoon has taken the most drastic steps to curb the usage of bottled water, many cities and municipalities around the globe have issued directives to their entities to stop spending public money on bottled water, which makes sense because when was the last time you were in a public building that didn't have a drinking fountain in it? But anyway, while Bundy might be a forerunner in this Bottled Water revolution they do have a long and sordid history with the bottled water industry.
While I think it's hilarious that a member of the bottled water industry lives in town and cast one of the two no votes the stone that started this hornets nest buzzing was when a bottled water company from over the hill and dale in Sydney tried to put what they call a "water extraction plant" (which in America we would call a bottled water plant) in the town in order to tap the towns aquifer, ship it to Sydney to get bottled up, and then bring it back to town to sell. That did not go over well. So while that little issue is working its way through the court system, the town decided to cut the whole thing off at the pass and cut off the demand. Although I sort of hope that the company puts in the low bid to provide the filtered water for the stores to sell to refill the reuseable bottles. I think that would be hilarious and the ultimate slap in the face of the town.
I do sort of like this town though, because they have risen up against stupidity and finally had the guts to say "Hey, this is dumb and we are no longer willing to participate." There aren't enough people who are willing to do that in this world. So good for you Bundanoon, I give you like 37,000 respect points. How do you feel about that? Probably pretty thirsty. Why not have a nice cool glass of tap water?

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