DETROIT (WWJ) How much oil does it take to make the plastic for bottled water? Sarah Baird from the Center for a New American Dream says it takes 17 million barrels — with the average American family consuming 56 bottles a week.

And she’s hoping to change that.

“Nearly half of all bottled water sold comes from the same municipal water tap that your tap water that flows out of the kitchen sink comes from, so you’re really not getting any sort of health benefits or fancy purified water when you buy it out of the bottle, you’re just creating more waste,” Baird said to WWJ Afternoon co-host Jayne Bower.

She added the center has started an online “un-bottled water” petition and hundreds of people have signed.

She says the millennial” generation is leading the charge against bottled water with several universities across the country moving away from selling bottled water on campus.

Americans buy over 70 billion bottles of water a year, the center says — enough to circle the globe more than 370 times. “Disposable plastic water bottles create excessive waste, and bottled water companies are profiting from an essential resource that should be accessible and affordable to all,” the group says on its website.

It’s especially notable in Detroit, where a Water Department threat to shut off service to delinquent customers made national headlines.

Overall, the center is dedicated to challenging the “more is more’ philosophy Americans seem to embrace, and bottle water is just one of their targets, alongside anti-commercialization efforts and things like wedding registries that send gifts to charity. Learn more about the “unbottled” water initiative HERE.



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