Over the last year or so, I’ve seen, numerous times on social media the slogan “We don’t need a handful of people doing zero waste perfectly; we need millions of people doing it imperfectly.” Essentially the focus with this statement is all about making the little changes that are likely to stick and building on them.
So could do a little think like switching your cooler from a bottled water cooler to a mains fed cooler make a difference in terms of environmental impact? The answer is quite simply – Yes! Here are a few reasons why:
- The water for our coolers comes directly from your water mains. If you have a bottled cooler the water has to be physically delivered to you on a regular basis. But the water for your bottled water cooler doesn’t come straight from your local depot… Bottled water is often bottled in places like Scotland. It has to be sent via haulage to the bottled water company’s depot. Then it is distributed to regional hubs. From there it is loaded onto trucks, driven down motorways, through towns, to your offices. That’s a lot of “water miles” right there.
- It is believed that transport is one of the greatest contributors to global warming and releases chemicals such as NO2 and CO2 which are harmful to human health. When vehicles break the brake pads and rubber on the types release tiny particles into the atmosphere known as PM 2.5. These are very small indeed – many times smaller than the diameter of a human hair. Due to their size, they can be easily absorbed into the lungs and contribute to chronic lung disease, asthma, reduced lung function and also increase mortality from lung cancer and heart disease.
- It sounds obvious – but our mains fed water coolers are just that – mains fed. So there is no 19litre plastic bottle sat on top of them. All types of plastic bottles, if not recycled can take between 450-1000 years to biodegrade in landfill sites. Currently in spite of numerous initiatives we only recycle a fraction of all plastic bottles used in the UK. No bottle equals less plastic waste all round. Bottled water cooler bottles are cleaned and put back into use, but constant reuse and cleaning means that they will at some point reach the end of their life. When they do, they need to be disposed of.
- All water coolers need to be serviced regularly. Bottled cooler have to be serviced double the amount of times each year, than plumbed in water dispensers. This is because every time you handle a bottle, it creates a greater contamination risk. As a result, an engineer will need to visit your site 4 times a year instead of 2 with a plumbed-in cooler. As above – more engineers visits equates to more NO2, CO2 and traffic pollution.
- Finally as we listed in point 1, your bottle of water has to go on a fairly long journey just to arrive at your front door. Once you’ve finished using the bottle the same is true in reverse. A driver collects your old bottles. Drives them back up the motorway to a local hub. From here they are uplifted by the bottling plant, driven all the way back to their bottling plant, for sterilisation and refilling. And so the cycle continues.
Simply by plumbing in your water cooler, you can cut down hugely on the amount of pollution and emissions – meaning our coolers are better for your business and better for the environment.