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June 28, 2006



Damn...... And I do so love imported sparkling water. Thanks for this post, think global act local, right?

Ben Casnocha

Thanks for posting a picture of water bottles. You have no idea how many of those I would love to put in my pocket, given Europe's Assault on h2o.


My buddy hedgehog accomplished the same thing for me with his words over here-


To put it another way: When I see a bottle of Evian, I always see the bottle filled with ounces of golden, fragrant petroleum, with a thin film of delicious spring water lining the base of the bottle, and tiny figures inside, toiling over nothing. That is what $2.00 a liter buys. Transportation, refrigeration, and the labor of many people doing dull, unnecessary work. Unnecessary because anywhere that you can find Evian, you can probably find piped water. Pipelines are the most efficient conveyance known. They require no unskilled labor. Many operate on gravity. You get the point.

The latest Harpers' Index does the math on obesity and points out that the net excess weight of people in the United States is more than equal to the weight of everyone in Los Angeles. So as we drive around, in cars, planes, bicycles, or whatever, we are using all this extra energy to transport lipids that would be better stored as preserved food than in our bodies"

You are forgetting the oil that goes into the plastic and the energy to bottle it--but he also turned me off Nalgene by pointing out that the Bisphenol A that sheds from scrubbed Nalgenes is not necessarily so wonderful.


So I too bought a Kleen Kanteen, and it's pretty tasty.



While skimming along the internet I found your blog and found it quite interesting. I enjoy reading well written , intelligent journalism wherever I find it and I’m happy fate allowed me to drop in. You might say I feel I am entitled to good journalism and there lies my segue.

While attending a minor discussion group a few months ago several of the participants were noticeably upset at the apparent stranglehold “big oil” companies seemed to have on our country. Some were in favor of boycotts while others were calling for nothing less than intensified action against these companies.
One young woman exhorted the viable virtues of living an oil free lifestyle and pointed out that she used very little to no oil herself and cooked all her meals on a wood burning stove. Having grown up in the 60’s I have to admit these rants did strike a long dormant nerve in me but the devil’s advocate in me had to ask,
“ Today, the 21st century, what part of our lives is not controlled by the use of oil?”
At this gathering, as might be expected, my question did draw the usual blank stares and a few comments on how “out of touch” I was with green thinking.

Your article on plastic bottles brought this back to me and I suppose as unenlightened as the question may be I still have to ask it.
Yes America, and the rest of the world, uses oil...a lot of it!
Oil is used in the making of plastic.
But, I have to ask (tongue firmly planted in cheek), aren't we entitled?
(your quote)

“Yet, it would seem that the water source of choice here in Aspen is bottles of Fiji water. “

The problem that our nation, albeit the world, faces today is not in the use of oil.
The problem is the unregulated notion of entitlement.
After all, doesn’t this world exist at our leisure? Who among us should be denied the sheer ease and convenience of plastic bottled water?
I assure you it is not the Aspen crowd.
What about Nalgene bottles?
When every deserving person is supplied with a Nalgene bottle will the company than drastically limit it’s production? Hmmmmm...what do you think?

I remember as our discussion group ended for the night and the participants were leaving everyone drove away in a fossil burning fuel vehicle by themselves. No one had walked or rode a bike. The woman that was living oil free did drive an old Volkswagen bug and after a little trouble with her starter off she went in a puff of smoke. I surmised she had to go cut a tree down to prepare her dinner. One young man was driving a beautiful new SUV and told me he felt guilty but was an avid mountain biker and therefore felt somewhat entitled. Another means of transportation would have been much too inconvenient.
I hope no one finds my response flippant or derogatory and since the original post is somewhat dated I hope my response even gets read.
I find each day as I see the price of fossil fuels rising and more and more rhetoric about “going green”. I have to ask again,
“In a world of assumed entitlements, What does going green really mean?”

What part of our everyday life, even going green, is not related to oil?


Most companies that bottle water domestically include a ton of fluoride, which is a byproduct of aluminum. Concentrated fluoride has been used as rat poison. Alternativly my tap water is full of another poison: chlorine. Just try using one of those pool chlorine tests on a glass of your tap water.

...I stick with my imported water.


I must wholeheartedly agree with Wayne. There are too many problems associated with domestically bottled water and tap water cannot be trusted. I am entitled to clean drinking water and with my busy schedule filtering it myself is impractical and much too time consuming. If all of us were forced to safely prepare our food and water there would be no time left for the important things.
Yes, regardless of the oil consumption, I am entitled therefore I will drink imported.


I grew up with tap water and that's what I still drink most of the time. Call me ignorant, yet note that I'm a perfectly healthy and happy one. Even more, forget my case. Take a trip to Finland to see just how much they promote (push) the local tap water, even (especially?) in 4-5 stars hotels and restaurants. Finland sure is a 'green' country. Back to imported water briefly: Evian tastes so uninviting that I wouldn't have it unless I had no choice.

Doug Snodgrass

This is very interesting and on first glance seems to present a quandary. There are many hazardous materials in tap water so it's not entirely practical to give up on clean drinking water. The remedy is not just to eliminate the oil that transports the water, but to eliminate our dependency on oil altogether.


Jesse Thomas

It's comments like Hhoovarted's "regardless of the oil consumption, I am entitled..." that reinforce the stigma that Americans are indolent and selfish. Go out and buy a water filter for $20, and take time out of your "busy schedule" to study the true nature of life and the tenuous balance of the world.


um, that photo is an awareness poster waiting to happen! that's fantastic!

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Even more, forget my case. Take a trip to Finland to see just how much they promote (push) the local tap water, even (especially?) Nice post

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