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Tap water is better than bottled water when it comes to people’s health, wallets and the environment – and Food & Water Watch has published a new report that helps make the case.

Take back the tap shows that bottled water generally is no cleaner, or safer, or healthier than tap water. While the report focuses on American statistics and stories, it is a wealth of ammo for public water advocates everywhere.

Municipal water systems are more rigorously tested and monitored than the bottled water industry, although the industry cloaks itself in a false image of purity. The report looks at building community confidence in public water systems – and pressing for the funds needed to keep public systems in excellent shape.

Tap water is so reliable, it’s often what corporations repackage and sell – at an enormous markup. Consumer pressure recently forced the relabelling of Pepsi’s Aquafina brand to make it clear it comes from a municipal water source.

Take back the tap also shows the incredible amount of waste and pollution the bottled water industry leaves in its wake. The fossil fuel used to create plastic bottles and transport them is a major climate crime.

Food & Water Watch is encouraging consumers to take back the tap by choosing tap water over bottled water whenever possible and supporting increased funding for safe and affordable public tap water.

For more on Canadian campaigns against bottled water, visit the Polaris Institute bottled water web site, www.insidethebottle.org – and check out the updated version of Polaris’s Inside the bottle report.