Binks Is Here

Commentary on the World

Bottled Water

So, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities is willing to pass a motion that urges municipalities to no longer sell bottled water in public facilities.

I disagree that this is the way to go about it. I think such a process should start at the top - show up to a few council meetings and see what councilors are drinking. I’d wager that, a lot of the time, it’s bottled water.

I also think that any municipality that so much as considers banning water in public facilities should be required to put up a water fountain beside every pop machine with a spout to fill up reusable bottles (the Student Life Center here has one; and it’s really convenient - no more half-filling your bottle as it’s tipped over; and no more waiting for 10 minutes while the guy in front of you futzes around with his bottle).

If you had a water fountain beside every pop machine, I think instantly you’d see more people showing up with water from home; and most of the people who are walking up to the machine to get something cold would probably say, “Oh, why not just take a sip of free water?”.

As it is now, trying to find a drink in most buildings open to the public is like some horrible game of Where’s Waldo. I was in the Metro Toronto Convention Center just recently, and there simply were no water fountains available; and even in the washrooms they had those automatic taps that only dispense warm water. The only cold, free water available was in the toilets. In such a situation, why would anyone bring a reusable bottle from home? You’ve got to lug it around indefinitely and once you’ve drank it all you STILL have to lug it around.

Guarantee water will be available; and people will start drinking it. You can’t make buckets of money from pop machines by denying people water fountains, then cry foul when people start buying bottled water.