This week’s Greenwash comes to us courtesy of Fiji Spring Water – “Every Drop Is Green“. I saw a bottle of this stuff at a mineral spring my wife and I were at last weekend and I started reading the bottle and was amazed at what they were trying to sell to consumers; that they were, in-fact, “Green” and that they were an eco-friendly company. Um, ok. Well, let’s take a look:
- Fiji is in the South Pacific Ocean and is 5,500 miles away from Los Angeles
- All the plastic needed to make the bottles has to not only be shipped to Fiji, but then shipped all over the world full of the water
- They are draining the aquifers of the native people, which is very valuable as the island is made out of volcanic rock without much fresh water
- Plastic takes over 500 years to degrade in a landfill, and unfortunately only about 23% of it gets recycled
- About one-third of Fiji’s people lack access to clean drinking water while this company makes millions off bottled water
- It takes a lot of energy and fuel to extract the water, make the bottles, pack the bottles, and ship the bottles over land and sea
So when they say that “Every drop is green”, nothing could be further from the truth. To their credit, they are doing several things to try to be more environmentally friendly, but marketing water sold in a plastic bottle as “green” is definitely not one of them. Add in the fact that a study by the Environmental Working Group found that bottled water had the same amount or more of chemical contaminants than tap water does, and you can really see the greenwashing in full effect. I wish bottled water companies would just come out and say “Yes, we know it is bad, but some people like water in plastic bottles, so we are not going anywhere”. At least then they would come across as honest.