One Thing You Can Do

water bottles 2When I went to the grocery store today they had some fancy reusable water bottles on sale so I grabbed a couple. ( My recent bout of heat stroke made aware I may need to carry water with me more often.  Wrote about heat stroke yesterday )

When I got to the counter the woman at the cash was intrigued with the bottles and I said I was trying to get the other person in my house to switch from bottled water.  Her response was a puzzled, “Why?”

I gave a quick run down on some of the horrors of bottled water and her surprise was unending as was mine that someone could possibly be unaware of the issues about bottled water.

I have personally not used bottled water (except in emergencies) for some time.  My church, the United Church of Canada, came out with strong words about bottled water in 2006.  The church and the United Nations are in agreement that water is a basic human right and both speak strongly against any move to privatize water supplies.

The case against bottled water is only part of the growing concern about water but it is one which I feel I can have some impact on.  If I don’t drink bottled water and get two other people to stop using it and they get two people and they get two people it begins to look just like any Amway meeting and the impact is far reaching.

In my own church we have been using bottled water for the past two years because water regulations on rural churches with wells and cisterns became very strict.  The system required and the constant testing which now needs to be done is quite an expense for a small congregation but we did it.  Now it’s my goal to begin to switch them back to regular water but it won’t be easy because the simplicity of it over the work of pouring water in jugs and lugging it around is hard to overcome.

I’m a Facebook follower and I don’t think there is a week I don’t see some sort of article about why we shouldn’t use bottled water.  The other day one story said it takes as much as five gallons of water to produce one bottle of water.  This is all the processing of the water itself and of the bottles and other packaging required.

The Walkerton water tragedy which took place in 2000 frightened many Canadians about the use of tap water but since then regulations on tap water have become very strict and it is well known that tap water is often safer than bottled water.

The figures on the use of oil used to produce bottled water are staggering.  The damage water bottles alone do to the environment and the creatures, particularly in oceans and waterways where people throw their bottles is unforgivable.

The notion that recycling will save us is not well thought out.  Yes it will save a lot but we now use more plastic than ever and the cost of recycling is high.  What ever happened to the days when we took an empty liquor bottle to the hardware store to be filled up with turpentine, or the returnable milk bottles and pop bottles we used.  We seem to have forgotten the very important word at the first of the RRR.  Reduce!

In the world where we feel we are practically useless as voices against the madness there are not many things we can do to affect change but this is one small thing that you have the power to do.  And just so you know the President’s Choice people and probably many other stores have personal reusable water bottles on sale right now.

There was an interesting article from York University I found when looking up information for this.  I encourage you to read it.  It is a quick primer on the trouble with bottled water.  


About Peggy Guiler

You just never know what show up on my blog. As the name implies it is about the stuff of life just like Spilt Milk. Everyday events spark thought and contemplation. Special events in the community, the country or the world may strike a cord and get me talking. Sometimes it's about people in my life or circumstances, sometimes about my garden, sometimes about a book or a political issue. Always it's about something I am passionate about. In my business, River of Hope Enterprises (, I work as an "Certified Coach" (International Coach Federation), a trainer, consultant and speaker. and as a spiritual director. I also drive a school bus to keep the wolf from the door while I build my business. I love the kids on the bus (most of the time). My family is grown and I have three grandkids who thrill my heart but I don't get to see any of them very often. Circumstances of life have made "family" difficult. My son died by suicide at age 16 in 2000 and the strain on our family relationships since has been huge. Mental health is a field where I worked for almost 22 years and where I still do some consulting and training. That combined with my own battle with depression and my son's death weave together to form some of my greatest soap box items: suicide intervention, suicide bereavement and peer support in mental health are right on the top of my list. Social justice is an underlying passion. Keeping the wolf from the door as a single parent was full-time work and my career path as a journalists was augmented with cleaning contracts, cooking, retail clerk, and bartending. I have known hard work and am grateful for the experience and perspective it has given me. A firmly grounded faith and a passion for learning has now taken me toward a new field as a Spiritual Director and I am soon adding to that a license to marry people. As I move toward retirement I am very aware that I have to keep working so I chose to do things which will meet my modest financial needs and also my love of supporting people in their life journey. Woven into all of this is my love of writing. Trained as a Journalist, and having worked in the field as a freelance news writer for many years, I have a great love for writing. This blog is a new beginning for me. As I hone my skills and begin to form a daily discipline of writing I hope it will lead to more writing in the future.
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