Home > Blog > An Alternative to Single-use Plastic Bottles

An Alternative to
Single-use Plastic Bottles

Did you know that around 12 million tonnes of plastic enter our environment each year, with an estimated 5 million tonnes from the UK alone? Unfortunately, plastic does not decompose and will stick around for hundreds of years, either in landfills or as litter in our streams and oceans. In a bid to combat the environmental issues this causes, the UK government has plans to eliminate avoidable plastic waste by the end of 2042.

Plastic water bottles contribute to this as they’re usually made from single-use plastic. There really isn’t any need for us to be using single-use plastic bottles anymore when there are other sustainable hydration options, such as reusable bottles with water fountains or water coolers. Having a reusable bottle that can be refilled from your water cooler or tap can save thousands of bottles from going to landfills or ending up polluting our environment.

Single-use plastic and Sport

Sporting events are a big culprit of single-use plastic waste, namely with the use of plastic water bottles by the spectators, and they are being called upon by the Environment Agency to address the usage of avoidable single-use plastic. Fortunately, event organisers are already taking heed.
For example, in 2019 one of our brands, The Water Cooler Company, installed 23 hydration stations at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, which have the potential to save 3,864 plastic bottles from landfills each game. Tottenham Hotspur has now been top of the Green League for 3 years running.

The Water Cooler Company has also provided hydration solutions for Lord’s Cricket Ground, as well as non-sporting companies such as M&S, University of Westminster, and more.

Plastic Bottle Alternative: Drinking Fountains

It’s not just sporting events that are trying to cut down on their plastic waste. Schools were challenged to go single-use plastic-free by 2022, and although this target has yet to be met, many have been making changes. For example, Emanuel school, Highfields and Penn Fields Schools, came to The Water Cooler Company to get bottle fillers and water fountains installed for their students. Not only is this a positive step forward for the environment by reducing plastic waste, but it is also encouraging students to ditch sugary drinks and consume water instead.

Many UK Universities are also working on reducing their plastic waste. The bottle fillers are both a filler and drinking fountain, they also have a counter on them which tells you how many bottles have been saved from landfills, encouraging participation.
For those worried about the water quality of the water from our drinking fountains and water dispensers, you don’t need to worry. The water is filtered, offering you a safe source of water.

Reducing single-use plastic on the go

Most of us have the best of intentions when it comes to the environment and doing our part to protect it, however, it’s not difficult to imagine leaving the house without a full refillable bottle of water. Don’t worry though, it’s not the end of the world. More and more places are offering free water refills throughout the UK. In fact, there’s an app you can use to find free tap water when you’re out and about as there are over 30,000 places around the UK listed on there, allowing you to refill on the go.

Our number one tip is to take a reusable water bottle with you wherever you go, and if in a pinch, ask for a glass of tap water before purchasing a single-use plastic bottle. Check out The Water Cooler Company’s Case Studies for more information on how you can reduce your plastic waste with your hydration.

RELATED ARTICLES