A survey has found that Americans consider drinking clean water even more important than having clean air. A survey was conducted back in May by Nestlé Waters North America, with the participants amounting to 4,756 adults across the lower 48 states. The overall main responses from the survey were:
- Clean drinking water is more important than clean air.
- Two out of three Americans think that their community is vulnerable to experiencing a water crisis.
- The majority of respondents believe that investment in water infrastructure is necessary.
- The public agrees with scientists that climate change will have an impact on the access to clean drinking water.
Clean drinking water has always been considered a civil right in America, but over the years, the country has relied more on bottled water, firstly for convenience, and then for quality. Bottled water is the second-largest beverage category in the US in terms of unit sold, behind soft drinks like carbonated soda. 12 billion gallons per year are consumed, which seems like a lot, but it is still quite small in comparison to the 9 trillion gallons of tap water that is consumed.
The population of the USA uses around 50 billion plastic bottles each year, meaning that the average person uses 167 disposable bottles each year – but only recycles 38. However, the good news about bottled water is that 99% comes from domestic sources within the USA. So many people rely on bottled water as their water source because it is seen as guaranteed safe drinking water.
Some American consumers who responded to the survey questioned whether their tap water was safe to drink, both in their homes and at schools. Parents with children under the age of 18 were more likely to worry about contaminated water and water sanitation and hygiene. Access to clean water seems to be more of a priority than clean air zones for Americans, despite increasing air pollution.
If you are worried about the safety of your tap water, why not invest in a bottled water cooler? That way, you’ll have access to the fresh, filtered water you get in a supermarket, but without the need to over-use disposable bottles which are bad for the environment, and can be bad for your health. A water cooler with a filter is one of the safest water resources (as long as you maintain basic sanitation).
For more information about the survey, see here.