<a href="http://www.greenlifestylemag.com.au/blogs/julie#">Green challenges</a>

Green challenges

Thinking global and acting local, Julie Grundy takes on any challenge we throw at her.

Planning ahead

Drinking from reusable bottle

Credit: iStockphoto

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I've done well with this challenge: I haven't bought a single bottle of water. I haven't even borrowed one, or looked longingly at one.

And this is really good, because previously I was used to just buying water whenever I wanted to, and I hardly ever bothered to recycle the bottle.

What I've learned this month is that the main reason people buy bottled water isn't the taste, or the health concerns, or the marketing. It's the convenience!

Bottled water is much healthier than soft drink, and it's often cheaper than soft drink. It would have been even cheaper to get water from home, but it's too late by the time we realise we want a drink.

We're thirsty, and the bottled water is sitting there, nicely chilled and looking like the pure, wholesome choice. So we go with it, maybe thinking that it's a bit silly to pay for water, but it's not as bad as the other options.

Which is true - but are we willing to harm the environment just for the sake of convenience? Remember that it takes three litres of oil to make one litre bottle; up to 30 litres of water per bottle for the factory processes; and 372 grams of greenhouse gases.

With millions of bottles being used once then thrown away, I just don't think it's worth the damage and waste.

Giving up bottled water has meant that I've had to plan ahead more often, bringing my water with me in my reuseable bottle. But it won't hurt me to think through my day a little bit before running out the front door :)

This is a challenge that I'll be keeping up even though the month is over, and I think it'll be an easy one to stick to now I've got my reusable bottles sorted. I still want one of those Platypus ones for my exercise though - maybe someone will buy me one for Christmas :)