The Environment

The bottled water industry is demonstrating solid environmental leadership when it comes to water conservation and efficiency.

Bottled water companies utilize and manage water resources in a responsible manner by doing the following:

  • Investing in broadly accepted science and technology to improve water quality
  • Strengthening water conservation practices

According to figures derived from EPA data, bottled water containers account for less than 0.03% of the U.S. waste stream.  Bottled water production accounts for less than 0.02% of the total groundwater withdrawn each year.

The bottled water industry also uses minimal amounts of water to produce an important, healthy, and calorie-free consumer product, and does so with great efficiency.  Even though it is a minimal groundwater user and is only one of among thousands of food, beverage and commercial water users, bottled water companies actively support comprehensive groundwater management policies that are science-based, multi-jurisdictional, treat all users equitably, and provide for future needs of this important resource.

All bottled water containers are 100% recyclable. And, according to the National Association for PET Container Resources (NAPCOR), now at 38.04%, the recycling rate for single-serve PET plastic bottled water containers has more than doubled in the last eight years.  We also use less plastic in bottled water bottles.

The Beverage Marketing Corporation (BMC) also found that between 2000 and 2011, the average weight of a 16.9 ounce (half-liter) single-serve PET plastic bottled water container has dropped by nearly 48% to 9.9 grams. This has resulted in a savings of 3.3 billion pounds of PET resin since 2000.

The bottled water industry recognizes that recycling rates, although increasing, need to improve and the industry is actively working to build partnerships that will help increase recycling efforts.