I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Bottled And Sold by Peter H. Gleick
Published by Island Press on 2010-05-03
Genres: Environmental Policy, Health & Fitness, Healthy Living, Political Science, Public Policy
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Peter Gleick knows water. A world-renowned scientist and freshwater expert, Gleick is a MacArthur Foundation "genius," and according to the BBC, an environmental visionary. And he drinks from the tap. Why don’t the rest of us?
Bottled and Sold shows how water went from being a free natural resource to one of the most successful commercial products of the last one hundred years—and why we are poorer for it. It’s a big story and water is big business. Every second of every day in the United States, a thousand people buy a plastic bottle of water, and every second of every day a thousand more throw one of those bottles away. That adds up to more than thirty billion bottles a year and tens of billions of dollars of sales.
Are there legitimate reasons to buy all those bottles? With a scientist’s eye and a natural storyteller’s wit, Gleick investigates whether industry claims about the relative safety, convenience, and taste of bottled versus tap hold water. And he exposes the true reasons we’ve turned to the bottle, from fearmongering by business interests and our own vanity to the breakdown of public systems and global inequities.
"Designer" H2O may be laughable, but the debate over commodifying water is deadly serious. It comes down to society’s choices about human rights, the role of government and free markets, the importance of being "green," and fundamental values. Gleick gets to the heart of the bottled water craze, exploring what it means for us to bottle and sell our most basic necessity.
Bottled water is seductive. We drink it thinking it’s healthier and better for us than the water that comes out of our sinks. When we are done with the bottles, they typically go into landfills. Reading Bottled And Sold by Peter H Gleick has further opened my eyes to this ‘scam.’ As basically the manufacturers of this product put out ads about how it’s so much more healthy than tap water, it’ll make you lose weight, and in some instances will cleanse the soul of the sinner, via blessed holy water which is also sold for profit.
Bottled And Sold by Peter H. Gleick is a non-fiction book about, obviously, the selling of water. It goes into depth on the environmental impact of consuming bottled water. I should probably confess right now that I used to drink bottled water until I decided it was ludicrous for me to spend over a dollar per bottle on something I could get from the tap for free. Call me cheap. Call me environmental. I prefer to think of it this way, each dollar I save by drinking tap water could go towards a new book.
Gleick explores the difference between tap and bottled water, and describes blind taste tests conducted. These tests basically found that there was no true difference in taste that people were able to detect. Other tests conducted found tap water to be more regulated and safer than bottled water – as proven by a Cleveland test of, I think, Evian water.
I think if you are interested in the green movement, or preserving the Earth, then Bottled And Sold by Peter H. Gleick is something you should read. It is not dense nor is it full of unreadable mumbo-jumbo jargon. It talks about how basically if you buy bottled water sold separately at the gas station, you wind up paying around 5$ per gallon, more money than you pump into your car per gallon. I thought that particular statistic was crazy, and sort of confirms my new book/tap water stance.
And I do love it when my stances are confirmed.