Comments on: The Water Fountain http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/ Sharon Astyk's Ruminations on an Ambiguous Future Wed, 19 Nov 2008 21:12:31 +0000 #?v=2.3.2 By: Alan http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2759 Alan Sun, 30 Sep 2007 18:24:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2759 Another point about water in plastic bottles -- it's going out of style!! Huzzah! All the information that's been getting out about the wastefulness, silliness, and possible unhealthiness of buying, carrying around, and drinking bottled water is starting to make a difference.<br/><br/>The latest style is to carry around your hydration supply in stainless steel or colorful, anodized aluminum Sigg-brand bottles.<br/><br/>In addition, there are all these municipal authorities putting the quietus on city governments shelling out for bottled water in city offices and city board and committee meetings, etc.<br/><br/>The bottled water industry which has been laughing at us all the way to bank for the last 15 years or so as bottled water came to be the hip thing to be seen with, are starting to get worried.<br/><br/>So, even if you don't think you need to carry water around with you, carrying around a metal bottle and drinking out of it frequently is making a statement that helps build the momentum against the absurdity of drinking water flown in from Fiji, or some glacier in Norway.<br/><br/>Alan<br/>Portland, Oregon (where our tap water is some of the purest in the world and it doesn't even need to be filtered) Another point about water in plastic bottles — it’s going out of style!! Huzzah! All the information that’s been getting out about the wastefulness, silliness, and possible unhealthiness of buying, carrying around, and drinking bottled water is starting to make a difference.

The latest style is to carry around your hydration supply in stainless steel or colorful, anodized aluminum Sigg-brand bottles.

In addition, there are all these municipal authorities putting the quietus on city governments shelling out for bottled water in city offices and city board and committee meetings, etc.

The bottled water industry which has been laughing at us all the way to bank for the last 15 years or so as bottled water came to be the hip thing to be seen with, are starting to get worried.

So, even if you don’t think you need to carry water around with you, carrying around a metal bottle and drinking out of it frequently is making a statement that helps build the momentum against the absurdity of drinking water flown in from Fiji, or some glacier in Norway.

Alan
Portland, Oregon (where our tap water is some of the purest in the world and it doesn’t even need to be filtered)

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By: Matt http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2758 Matt Sun, 30 Sep 2007 17:33:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2758 Reading back over that comment, I realize that I was kind of incoherent for the last part. However, I am going to write my own post on something like this, so I am not going to go back and revise it. Reading back over that comment, I realize that I was kind of incoherent for the last part. However, I am going to write my own post on something like this, so I am not going to go back and revise it.

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By: Matt http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2757 Matt Sun, 30 Sep 2007 17:19:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2757 This is brilliant, I just came here from a comment someone left on Greer's site. Thank you Sharon, it is good to have some one clearly and succinctly say the things that have been kicking around my head for too long.<br/><br/>Just as an addition, thinking about public and private. I have been thinking about housing, and how i want a yard, nut then I thought about parks, and how they can serve as yards, if only we allow our sense of private space to change. This is brilliant, I just came here from a comment someone left on Greer’s site. Thank you Sharon, it is good to have some one clearly and succinctly say the things that have been kicking around my head for too long.

Just as an addition, thinking about public and private. I have been thinking about housing, and how i want a yard, nut then I thought about parks, and how they can serve as yards, if only we allow our sense of private space to change.

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By: jewishfarmer http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2756 jewishfarmer Sun, 30 Sep 2007 12:58:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2756 Hi Mark - Thanks for the correction. I admit, I had read in some now-unremembered article that most plastic bottles, when heated, leach dioxins into liquid. Since bottled water generally sits on loading docks, inside trucks, etc... for long periods, it seemed a given to me that they got heated as some point. But I must be wrong about this - I will check with a chemist, or if you do, let me know. Thank you for the clarification.<br/><br/>I'm glad to hear that some places still place a heavy priority on public water fountains. One of my current projects is to get my town and other towns in my regions to consider placing manual well pumps in public places, so that in the event of long-term power outage, residents can have a local water source.<br/><br/>Stephen H., I agree with you that there are some impresive new technologies, and I see the value of electric lighting. I strongly advocate people equip themselves with some kinds of renewable technologies. But my difficulty with the idea of "house attached" solar technology is that it seems like such a waste of money. You might spend one to two thousand dollars for solar panels, installation and wiring, batteries to run 4 LED lights, and you have a lighting system that doesn't work 1/5 of the year in my location because it is often cloudy and dark for days in the winter, and that requires huge costly, toxic batteries to be replaced regularly. Or, you could buy 4 $25 solar battery chargers, 8 sets of renewable AA batteries and 4 portable LED lights for a grand total of $250 and have exactly the same effect, only with little tiny batteries and 1/10 the hassle. No electrician need call.<br/><br/>Sharon Hi Mark - Thanks for the correction. I admit, I had read in some now-unremembered article that most plastic bottles, when heated, leach dioxins into liquid. Since bottled water generally sits on loading docks, inside trucks, etc… for long periods, it seemed a given to me that they got heated as some point. But I must be wrong about this - I will check with a chemist, or if you do, let me know. Thank you for the clarification.

I’m glad to hear that some places still place a heavy priority on public water fountains. One of my current projects is to get my town and other towns in my regions to consider placing manual well pumps in public places, so that in the event of long-term power outage, residents can have a local water source.

Stephen H., I agree with you that there are some impresive new technologies, and I see the value of electric lighting. I strongly advocate people equip themselves with some kinds of renewable technologies. But my difficulty with the idea of “house attached” solar technology is that it seems like such a waste of money. You might spend one to two thousand dollars for solar panels, installation and wiring, batteries to run 4 LED lights, and you have a lighting system that doesn’t work 1/5 of the year in my location because it is often cloudy and dark for days in the winter, and that requires huge costly, toxic batteries to be replaced regularly. Or, you could buy 4 $25 solar battery chargers, 8 sets of renewable AA batteries and 4 portable LED lights for a grand total of $250 and have exactly the same effect, only with little tiny batteries and 1/10 the hassle. No electrician need call.

Sharon

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By: foeckingmf http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2755 foeckingmf Sun, 30 Sep 2007 07:36:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2755 Nice piece Sharon.<br/><br/>Just a comment. Water bottles do not contain dioxin. 2,3,7,8 tetrachlorodibenzodioxin (the nasty one), is an industrial impurity in the banned herbicide Silvex (agent orange). Polyethylene terephthalate bottles have no organic chlorine, thereore cannot make dioxin.<br/><br/>They can have phthalete plasticizers, some of which are xenoestrogens. People feel that is why American girls reach puberty faster - any other effects are controversial.<br/><br/>You might want to check with a chemist or doctor before posting artciles like this. I'd do it if you want.<br/><br/>Mark Nice piece Sharon.

Just a comment. Water bottles do not contain dioxin. 2,3,7,8 tetrachlorodibenzodioxin (the nasty one), is an industrial impurity in the banned herbicide Silvex (agent orange). Polyethylene terephthalate bottles have no organic chlorine, thereore cannot make dioxin.

They can have phthalete plasticizers, some of which are xenoestrogens. People feel that is why American girls reach puberty faster - any other effects are controversial.

You might want to check with a chemist or doctor before posting artciles like this. I’d do it if you want.

Mark

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By: Stephen Heyer http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2754 Stephen Heyer Sun, 30 Sep 2007 01:07:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2754 First of all, I’m from small town North Australia and I’m happy to say we are still so backward, so disgustingly socialist and community minded, that we do public water fountains, lots of them.<br/><br/>Further south, in the big cities, my people who live there tell me that in places they have been removed because the shop owners complain that they reduce the sales of soft drinks. They don’t seem to see anything wrong with this, but then they are rich, or like to think they are, and the rich and those who think they are or one day might be, really are different.<br/><br/>Anyway, from historical knowledge here and from watching parts of the world that have had or are having collapse situations and visiting some, I agree totally that community is what will get you through.<br/><br/>However, I think you are being a bit too pessimistic when it comes to modest alternative energy solutions on an individual bases.<br/><br/>We seem to have just reached a crucial tipping point where technology becomes easier, perhaps progressively easier and more useful and more doable on modest scales. For example, installing a modest solar panel and/or small wind generator and a few batteries to run some ultra-efficient LED lights is now easy and cheap.<br/><br/>Anyone who has spent time in places where there is no electricity will know the revolution that even modest electric lighting brings to peoples lives.<br/><br/>And there are many other, small scale, fairly inexpensive, technologies such as water purification that would be immensely convenient. Many could even be manufactured in a small to middling regional city once local manufacturing was started up again.<br/><br/>But of course, trying to fit out a typical McMansion and two SUVs to run “off grid” is totally impractical and for reasons I won’t go into here undesirable. First of all, I’m from small town North Australia and I’m happy to say we are still so backward, so disgustingly socialist and community minded, that we do public water fountains, lots of them.

Further south, in the big cities, my people who live there tell me that in places they have been removed because the shop owners complain that they reduce the sales of soft drinks. They don’t seem to see anything wrong with this, but then they are rich, or like to think they are, and the rich and those who think they are or one day might be, really are different.

Anyway, from historical knowledge here and from watching parts of the world that have had or are having collapse situations and visiting some, I agree totally that community is what will get you through.

However, I think you are being a bit too pessimistic when it comes to modest alternative energy solutions on an individual bases.

We seem to have just reached a crucial tipping point where technology becomes easier, perhaps progressively easier and more useful and more doable on modest scales. For example, installing a modest solar panel and/or small wind generator and a few batteries to run some ultra-efficient LED lights is now easy and cheap.

Anyone who has spent time in places where there is no electricity will know the revolution that even modest electric lighting brings to peoples lives.

And there are many other, small scale, fairly inexpensive, technologies such as water purification that would be immensely convenient. Many could even be manufactured in a small to middling regional city once local manufacturing was started up again.

But of course, trying to fit out a typical McMansion and two SUVs to run “off grid” is totally impractical and for reasons I won’t go into here undesirable.

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By: Anonymous http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2753 Anonymous Sat, 29 Sep 2007 13:10:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2753 My question in light of the comments on dioxin and xenoestrogens is : How is one to properly store water in case of an emergency? And in what? <br/><br/>We drink water purified by a filter on the sink tap but live in an apartment and would like a small just-in-case stock. Is store-bought water in plastic milk-style jugs kept in the fridge a bad idea? I was under the impression that the water would need to be purified and sealed to be able to keep for a while.<br/><br/>Anyone have a better suggestion? My question in light of the comments on dioxin and xenoestrogens is : How is one to properly store water in case of an emergency? And in what?

We drink water purified by a filter on the sink tap but live in an apartment and would like a small just-in-case stock. Is store-bought water in plastic milk-style jugs kept in the fridge a bad idea? I was under the impression that the water would need to be purified and sealed to be able to keep for a while.

Anyone have a better suggestion?

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By: Alan http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2752 Alan Sat, 29 Sep 2007 06:26:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2752 Not every city has abandoned the idea of clean, pure, attractive public water fountains.<br/><br/>Among Portland's many old-fashioned amenities (along with our brand-new streetcar lines) are our "Benson bubblers", drinking water fountains scattered throughout downtown and even in some older residential areas. They were first installed in 1896. They are carefully maintained and the citizenry makes certain that they are always available.<br/><br/>Spring through fall, they bubble invitingly from early morning until around 10pm. There are 52 of the original design with 4 bubblers and another 76 with a single head.<br/><br/>Here is a link which includes a photo: http://tinyurl.com/2a6xmp<br/><br/>Alan<br/>Portland, Oregon Not every city has abandoned the idea of clean, pure, attractive public water fountains.

Among Portland’s many old-fashioned amenities (along with our brand-new streetcar lines) are our “Benson bubblers”, drinking water fountains scattered throughout downtown and even in some older residential areas. They were first installed in 1896. They are carefully maintained and the citizenry makes certain that they are always available.

Spring through fall, they bubble invitingly from early morning until around 10pm. There are 52 of the original design with 4 bubblers and another 76 with a single head.

Here is a link which includes a photo: http://tinyurl.com/2a6xmp

Alan
Portland, Oregon

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By: --mf http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2751 --mf Sat, 29 Sep 2007 03:47:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2751 Sharon--<br/><br/>Dioxins are the least of the health problems with plastic bottled water.<br/><br/>I urge you to research xenoestrogens in regard to plastic beverage bottles.<br/><br/>If there is any other reason, beyond what you've already stated here, to avoid the bottled water (or any other plastic bottled beverage), this should be at the top of the list under dioxins.<br/><br/>Look for a "7" on the bottom of the bottle. This is the Canadian Standard Rating for plastics. The "7" denotes that xenoestrogens are present in the plastic, and we can assume it has leached into the contained product. I suggest a proper glass-lined thermos.<br/><br/>Just helping to build on an excellent post.<br/><br/><br/>Long life to you and yours,<br/><br/>--Monkeyfister<br/>http://monkeyfister.blogspot.com Sharon–

Dioxins are the least of the health problems with plastic bottled water.

I urge you to research xenoestrogens in regard to plastic beverage bottles.

If there is any other reason, beyond what you’ve already stated here, to avoid the bottled water (or any other plastic bottled beverage), this should be at the top of the list under dioxins.

Look for a “7″ on the bottom of the bottle. This is the Canadian Standard Rating for plastics. The “7″ denotes that xenoestrogens are present in the plastic, and we can assume it has leached into the contained product. I suggest a proper glass-lined thermos.

Just helping to build on an excellent post.

Long life to you and yours,

–Monkeyfister
http://monkeyfister.blogspot.com

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By: Carms http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2750 Carms Sat, 29 Sep 2007 02:21:00 +0000 http://sharonastyk.com/2007/09/28/the-water-fountain/#comment-2750 I think you've hit on an interesting point and I see a connection between privatising more of our lives and being less capable of living cooperatively. It seems to me that being able to work together and be mutually supportive is what will be needed when the full impact of climate change and peak oil hits. <br/><br/>As an aside, we're fortunate in Australia that there are still plenty of public drinking fountains in most towns and cities. In spite of this the bottled water industry is huge here and I don't think that many people make use of the public facilities. I think you’ve hit on an interesting point and I see a connection between privatising more of our lives and being less capable of living cooperatively. It seems to me that being able to work together and be mutually supportive is what will be needed when the full impact of climate change and peak oil hits.

As an aside, we’re fortunate in Australia that there are still plenty of public drinking fountains in most towns and cities. In spite of this the bottled water industry is huge here and I don’t think that many people make use of the public facilities.

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