Like America, France has been making an effort to reduce their carbon footprint. According to The New York Times, Eau de Paris has inaugurated the first bubbly water fountain in a wooden hut of the Jardin de Reuilly, in eastern Paris. The City of Light has decided to use the tactic of putting bubbles in their drinking water. A peculiar way of approaching the green scene? Maybe.
This particular idea was conceived in Italy but influenced the public water company Eau de Paris. Italians are the world's biggest consumers of sparkling water. Each of them averaged to more than 920 gallons of which half is sparkling water, so it means saving approximately 2,300 plastic bottles of 1.5 liters each a day. With these figures, the Italians have installed 215 sparkling water fountains in the country's northern regions.
Philippe Burguière, the spokesman for Eau de Paris, said that their aim was to promote tap water in a country that invests a lot to preserve its quality. Essentially, the system works by them chilling the water between 42.8 and 46.4 degrees Fahrenheit and then injects carbon dioxide into regular tap water to make the bubbles thin and tasty. The fountain is connected to the public water system and uses six taps to provide both sparkling and flat water.
How does this reduce their carbon footprint? Well, the French consume about 40 gallons of bottled water per person each year. This is not only one of the highest amounts in Europe—it’s also in the world. In comparison, Americans throw away 2.5 million plastic bottles every hour! Mr. Burguière remarks, “In France, it's only an experiment, but we will see how people react to it, and we'll try to put water fountains in other parks.”
Watch the YouTube video to see the newscast for this fountain. Aside from just recycling bottles or trying to reduce the usage of plastic, recycling in general should be done as much as possible. The Clean Air Council, an organization dedicated to protecting everyone’s free right to breathe air, has many waste and recycling facts that enforce the message of conserving our resources. For example, the average American, in one lifetime, uses: 18 tons of paper, 23 tons of wood, 16 tons of metal, and 32 tons of organic chemicals. One ton of paper from recycled pulp saves 17 trees, 3 cubic yards of landfill space, 7,000 gallons of water, 4,200 kilowatt hours (enough to heat your home for half year), 390 gallons of oil, and prevents 60 pounds of air pollutants.
Facts like these really do show that we can make a difference and every individual’s effort counts. The aphorism of the three R’s—Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle—has probably gotten so monotonous that it has lost its impact. Though it may be tiresome to hear, people cannot deny that recycling saves a lot of green in the long run. Just think of how many times you may drink a can of soda, bottled water, or even bottled juice and you throw that item away after you’re finished. In the end, you’re basically discarding money you could use for something else. For more tips on how to conserve our resources without drastically changing your lifestyle please visit Planet Green.
Image courtesy of Fotopedia.com.