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 the EPA, 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 Bottled water production accounts for less than 0.02% of the total groundwater withdrawn each year. In fact, the entire U.S. beverage industry uses less than 0.03%.
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.
The bottled water industry continues to focus on improving methods to bottle and dispose of packaged water products in ways that best serve the environment.
All bottled water containers are one-hundred percent recyclable. And, according to the National Association for PET Container Resources (NAPCOR), now at 38.6 percent, the recycling rate for single-serve PET plastic bottled water containers has more than doubled in the last seven years. The Beverage Marketing Corporation (BMC) found that over the last 11 years the average weight of a 16.9 ounce (half-liter) single-serve PET plastic bottled water container has dropped by almost 47.8 percent, to 9.9 grams.
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.