Today I received my e-news from Cirque du Soleil announcing that its founder, Guy Laliberté, has launched a nonprofit foundation named ONE DROP. ONE DROP’s mission is to “fight poverty worldwide by ensuring that everyone across the planet has access to water.”
The foundation’s site is full of interesting facts and information about water accessibility worldwide. One section, named Join the Movement, gives practical ways we all can join the effort. The following commitment is posted as a starting point for individual daily water conservation:
- I will take quick showers of five minutes or less using a low-flow shower head.
- I will wash my car by filling a bucket with water and using a sponge.
- I will repair leaking taps.
- I will fill my bath tub only one-quarter full.
- I will quickly repair toilets that continue to flow after flushing.
- I will limit my consumption of bottled water.
- In the garden, I will adapt my sprinklers to the size and shape of my lawn to make sure that I do not water my driveway and the sidewalk. Also, I will collect rainwater in a rain barrel for watering.
- I will turn the tap off while brushing my teeth.
- I will share these simple tips with those around me.
One I was happy to see on the list was the suggestion to limit consumption of bottled water. Popularity of bottled water exploded in the 1990s; at the time, it was considered the mark of the elite. With relatively few users and recycling in its infancy, this posed a rather minor concern in the public’s heart and mind.
Today, however, bottled water consumption has risen exponentially and is practically the norm across society; this high usage coupled with today’s great concern for environmental issues makes consumption now a major problem both for landfills and within the hearts of the public. What was once the mark of the elite is now the mark of the callous, who aren’t heeding the call to reduce, reuse, and recycle.
The press has dubbed this change of heart the “bottled water backlash.” So what was once considered chic and elite is now considered tacky and unfashionable. At least this trend is for a good cause; we’ll have to make sure this fad sticks!