Posted : July 2009
Author : Ben Goulding
A small town in south-east Australia has become the first place in the world to ban bottled water. The people of Bundanoon, located in New South Wales have voted overwhelmingly in favor of the ban at a public meeting, with 398 out of the 400 people at the gathering wanting bottled water to be banned in the town. The community realized they needed to act when Norlex Holdings, a drinks company, unveiled plans to tap an underground reservoir in the town, transport the water to Sydney (some 150 km away) and then send it back bottled.
The people believe that this procedure makes unnecessary use of transport fuel and that serving water in bottles is an unnecessary use of plastic. Shops in Bundanoon will now be banned from stocking and selling bottled water, visitors from the town will be discouraged from drinking it and new filtered water fountains will be placed on the main street in the town so that people can fill up their bottles for free.
This may be good for the environment, but what effect is it likely to have on the local economy? With Australians spending about half a billion dollars on bottled water per year, a knock-on ban in other parts of the country could have devastating effects for the economy. Perhaps Australia should ban their exports of Fosters Lager which they transport all around the world. There are plenty of other perfectly good brewers in almost every country aren’t there? This would save thousands of tons of fuel and greenhouse gases from being polluted.
Is this really a sensible decision by the people of Bundanoon or are they making a mountain out of a mole hill? You decide.