The Concord Patch reports that after three years of debate, Concord is one of the first communities in the U.S. to pass a by-law that bans the sale of single-serving plastic water bottles. Led by local activists pushing to reduce waste and fossil fuel use, the by-law passed by a Counted Majority Vote of 403 voting in favor and 364 opposed and went into effect Jan. 1, 2013.
Those in favor of the ban see it as an opportunity to reduce the overall consumption of plastics.
The Concord Conserves, a local blog outlining the pros of the movement for low-impact living, says not only is the local tap water healthy, safe and economical, plastic bottles contribute to pollution in many ways. According to the site, "every year, the bottled water industry produces as much carbon dioxide as 2 million cars, contributing to global warming, which is now recognized as a serious threat to humanity by the world scientific community."
Their statistics say that less than 25 percent of plastic water bottles are actually recycled, with tons ending up in landfills or litter.
Those in opposition feel it takes away personal freedoms and represents a form of prohibition with no practical benefits for individual citizens. They also state that the by-law does not provide adequate emergency measures, citing that, "It would take several days to supply Concord with single-serving bottled water if needed."
How it reads:
According to the city's website, the ban affects local businesses: "It shall be unlawful to sell non-sparkling, unflavored drinking water in single-serving polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles of 1 liter (34 ounces) or less in the Town of Concord on or after January 1, 2013."
So, within the city, local businesses are selling Concord On Tap-stamped Camelbak reusable water bottles that residents can fill from their taps.
And while the ban is on the SALE of single serve water bottles, residents can still buy from nearby cities and bring them into Concord.
What do you think? Is this a law that other cities should consider? Or is it a "feel good" prohibition that will be difficult to enforce? Is this a law you would support if given the opportunity?