A Fountain on Every Corner

There was a wonderful op-ed in the New York Times last week about the next step in breaking the bottled water habit: so you have your non-toxic, reusable bottle…where do you fill it up?

fountainWhen walking in New York City on a hot day, Elizabeth Royte says, tap water is not as readily available as bottled water. This is not because New York is not committed to changing public perceptions about the virtues of water from the faucet--last year the city spent $700,000 on an ad campaign to remind its citizens that there is nothing wrong with their water. There are simply not as many public drinking fountains as there are corner delis. The solution, Royte says, is to change this ratio by placing water fountains on every busy corner. Each fountain will quickly save its own weight in plastic trash and would place New York among the ranks of cities like Rome, Paris, or Portland (pictured, left), which all offer a welcoming sip of water to passersby--for free.

Civic life is about shared spaces and city dwellers take pride in knowing their surroundings. Everyone has an opinion about the best place to get a slice of pizza in their area. Now you can help the growing bring-your-own-bottle movement by submitting public water fountain locations in your area. Visit Beyond the Bottle and help map out public water sources.

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