Eco Tip for 5-27-18
Rethink the Drink for Two Reasons
By David Goldstein, Ventura County PWA, IWMD
Two weeks ago, the Partnership for a Healthy Ventura County used posters and a display at the Ventura County Government Center to point out the sugar content of popular beverages and urge consumers to consider water instead. The partnership, including representatives from Ventura County Public Health, community organizations, health service providers, food security organizations, schools, local area businesses, and others communicates with consumers to encourage healthier choices.
Another reason to think about your drink choice is to avoid single use bottles. Although plastic bottles can be easily recycled in curbside or commercial programs, many are disposed. California data for last year, posted at the beginning of this month by the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery, or CalRecycle, showed over 20% of the most easily recycled types of plastic bottles – soda and water bottles with redemption value – were landfilled.
Some schools and workplaces encourage the reuse of bottles by providing hydration stations rather than just drinking fountains. At the Ventura County Government Center, for example, spigots above conventional fountains have enough space for a large sports bottle. The station in the hallway outside my office has a sign with a digital display which updates each time a bottle is filled.
It recently said the device “helped eliminate the waste from 52,995 bottles.” I doubt each of those re-fills would really have otherwise resulted in the purchase of a bottle, but the counter at least makes a point about how much water is consumed at the station.
At home, carbon filters, reverse osmosis, or simple taps produce healthful drinks of water, but water must compete with better advertised and more flavorful alternatives. Water is boring. To add excitement, add ingredients like sliced cucumber and mint to a pitcher of ice water. It works best if you add when the pitcher is half full, then fill all the way, chill for 20 minutes, and drink within 24 hours, according to a recipe distributed by the Ventura County Wellness Program.
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