The Facts

International water

  • Over 1000 single-use plastic water bottles are used per second in the US; over 35 billion a year
  • Tap water in Arlington costs less than 1 cent/gallon ($3.98/1000 gallons)
  • The cost of a bottle of water is over 1000 x the cost of tap water
  • Bottled water is 2-4 times the cost of gasoline
  • 69% of plastic bottles are not recycled (EPA Office of Solid Waste, 2010)
  • Each year over 4 billion pounds of PET plastic bottles end up in landfills (EPA Office of Solid Waste, 2010)
  • Disposing of plastic water bottles costs cities nationwide about $70 million in landfill tipping fees each year (EPA Office of Solid Waste, 2010)
  • It takes 450 years for plastic to decompose (U.S. National Park Service, Mote Marine Lab)
  • During DEEP America Beautiful’s 2008 Great American Cleanup, volunteers recovered 189 million PET plastic bottles
  • Production and transport of plastic water bottles for the US market consumes >30 million barrels of oil/year and produces as much carbon dioxide as 2 million cars (Peter Gleick, 2009)
  • It takes 2000 x the energy to produce bottled water than to produce an equal amount of tap water (Peter Gleick, 2009)
  • Ecosystems and wildlife are damaged/destroyed by plastic debris