Board of Supes passes tough ban on bottled water

Tuesday afternoon, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously passed one of the toughest bans on bottled water in the country.
March 4, 2014 12:00:00 AM PST
Tuesday afternoon, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously passed one of the toughest bans on bottled water in the country.

There are a few other cities that actually have complete bans. However, if this ban goes on and is signed by the mayor, San Francisco will be the first major city in the country to impose new restrictions on selling bottled water.

Board of Supervisors President David Chiu has been carrying around a plastic water bottle with a goopy liquid inside -- it's oil. It is a demonstration of how much it takes to make the bottle, ship it, and recycle it.

"This is your typical, single-serving, plastic water bottle. This is what we're trying to phase out," said Chiu.

His legislation targets 21-ounce water bottles and smaller. He insists it's not a ban because people can still buy bottle water in most places throughout the city, just not on city property or at city sponsored events, unless they bring their own.

Water bottlers say they are being unfairly singled out. Chris Hogan from the International Bottled Water Association told us, "To target only one particular product, like bottle water, PET plastic ? which is what bottles are made from ? is used for sodas, juices."

At regular venues, like Off The Grid food trucks at United Nations Plaza, vendors would not be allowed to sell bottled water. That's something opponents of the ordinance point out leaves customers only sugary options.

One customer we spoke with says he doesn't see a problem. San Francisco resident Ryan McMahon says, "Some people are really into the convenience factor, but I think if they offer some other way of getting water, whether it be paper cups and a giant vat, a lot of people will just go that route."

Larger events like festivals at Golden Gate Park would have to arrange for large water filling stations, like the one that we saw, rented out by Paul Baker from Event Water Solutions. He told us, "We man the stations, we have staff here, so there's one set of hands touching these nozzles, there's not 10,000 sets of hands."

The board will vote on this again next week before it goes on to the mayor for his consideration.


Load Comments