Last Friday I was wandering about in Dublin waiting to have my toothy extracted at 1330hrs. As a navy brat, trained to expect lunch at 1pm ± 2 minutes, I got predictably hank marvin as I stepped of the DART to walk into deepest suburbia where the orthodontist has her practice. I had a sandwich to hand [forward planning, me] but had been planning to eat if after the event. I needed something to drink and popped into a convenient Tesco for a 500ml bottle of water. Well what a shower of bad bargains:
- €0.85 Tipperary 500ml
- €0.95 Ballygowan 500ml
- €1.09Volvic 500ml . . . up to
- €3.29 London Essence Orange And Elderflower Tonic Water !!
- €0.35 Tesco Sparkling Water Apple And Raspberry 1 Litre
- €1.59 Ballygowan Sports Still Water 1 Litre
- €1.59 Tesco Ironing Water Spring Petals 1 Litre
- €1.69 Tesco Prune Juice Water 1 Litre
- €2.09 San Pellegrino Sparkling Water 1 Litre
I get, as you see, rather exercised about the productification of water. The whole point of having Irish Water [and its predecessors] was to produce clean clear potable water from every tap in the country. More or less coincident with the final delivery of this dream - boiled water notices are no longer normal in Roscommon - is the widespread belief that Chateau Tap is unfit for human consumption. Almost certainly carried forward by the omnipresent marketing of minute quantities of water for fantastical prices. What, you can't afford bottled water? Ye'll never marry my son, y'trollop.
Bad as marketing something quite normal for inflated prices is, at least it is honest capitalosm. There is another crowd who are selling the stuff that falls from the sky but braying an ecoplanet message with their mark-up. They are called Ecofil and I first encountered them as a Youtube ad. Then I checked out their webpage. They provide water fountains [I think] Putting an Elkay ezH2O Bottle Filler in your school will provide:
- Ready access to drinking water and hydration.
- Elimination of Plastic bottles in the environment
- Filtration of Lead, chlorine and other impurities.
But that's a good thing! One way of solving the world's runaway carbon footprint is to make lots of things out of polyethylene [86% carbon by weight], use them as long as you can and then pop 'em into nice big anaerobic landfills. It will be like recreating the Carboniferous coal-measures all over again.