In the UK, 38.5 million plastic bottles are sold every single day – but only about half of these get recycled. Many of the rest end up on our streets, in our parks, and – as famously and heartbreakingly shown in David Attenborough’s Blue Planet – in our seas and oceans, where they cause untold damage to these delicate environments and the creatures that depend on them. Yet there is something simple we can all do to help fight this modern menace.
Refill is a national, practical campaign aimed at reducing plastic bottle pollution. The idea is to make people fall in love with tap water again, by providing a network of ‘refill stations’: friendly businesses who have agreed to fill up bottles with tap water for free, and without expecting any kind of purchase at the same time. All you need to do is get into the habit of carrying a refillable bottle on your person (or several, depending on the size of your brood!) – and free, healthy tap water is yours! For those who are used to bottled water, it’s worth noting that tap water is subject to more stringent safety tests than bottled water, meaning it’s actually the healthier choice. And of course it’s a lot healthier than the sugary alternatives on offer. In blind taste tests, many people cannot tell the difference between chilled bottle water, and chilled tap water.
Not only is refilling great for the environment, it can also save a significant amount of money. The average adult is recommended to drink 1.2 litres of water a day – with plastic bottled water this would cost approximately £284 over the course of a year. Yet tap water costs just 0.0015p per litre (over 400 times cheaper!), that’s less than £1 per person for an entire year. When you also have little ones to keep hydrated, the savings can really add up.
Over 100 lovely businesses in Norwich are already signed up to the scheme, poised to offer you free refills, and there are over 12,000 refill stations nationally (with more joining all the time!). And if you’re wondering where they are exactly, get the handy Refill app (on Android & iPhone) which shows all of their locations using GPS – so you can always find the closest place for a top-up. Most of the participating businesses are also proudly displaying one of our bright blue Refill window stickers, so keep your eyes peeled for them!
To win your own 500ml Refill bottle (winner must collect from Matt in NR3, or by arrangement in the city centre) simply write ‘Let’s Refill, Norwich!’ in the comments of the FB post on the Norwich Mumbler PAGE and tag a thirsty friend who you think would love to know about the scheme. Shares will be given an extra entry 🙂
(Prize draw closes on 23rd July – so be quick! – and prize is non transferable. Collection must be from NR3 or in the city centre by arrangement with Matt).
THIS PRIZE DRAW IS NOW FINISHED. THE WINNER OF THE BOTTLE WAS CLAIRE ANDREWS.