According to Water.org nearly 1 billion people don’t have access to clean drinking water. Despite our access to free, clean drinking water, North Americans still prefer bottled water. The United Nations estimates there are 46,000 pieces of plastic in every square mile of ocean and approximately 80% of this plastic debris originates from land. North Americans seem to be the worst culprits as over the last few decades, we’ve turned away from our kitchen tap to the refrigerator for a 500 ml bottle to quench our thirst.
Well, not at Vigilant Futures, not anymore!
Back in January we began an awareness campaign to draw attention to the number of plastic water bottles we were going through every day. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then what better image for everyone to gaze upon than the actual plastic bottles consumed?
Although we had always recycled every bottle used, we started a collection in each department where every employee was asked to place all their empty bottles in designated bags for 2 ½ months. The bags were quickly filling up and we needed additional storage for the growing number of bags!
During World Water Week we unveiled the bags filled with empty plastic water bottles to all employees. Bag by bag, we brought out the bottles for all to see. Shocked faces and surprised gasps could be heard as over 20 large blue bags were brought and piled one on top of the other in our kitchen. What followed was a two-day vote where every employee was given the chance to guess how many bottles Vigilant had gone through during the collection from of January 29 to April 22.
The result? We had gone through a massive total of 3, 384 plastic water bottles! Clearly, this was a wakeup call for us all. All were ready and willing to take on the challenge of ridding our office of all plastic bottles and starting a much greener, healthier way of drinking this precious source of life!
Today, our company is officially a plastic bottle-free zone. Each employee got a Vigilant-branded SIGG™ bottle and water filtration units were installed in every department and conference room. Thanks to all Vigilant employees for your efforts and making the transition to a water-bottle free office easy.
To read more about the impact of plastic on our oceans, please read Plastic Debris in the World’s Oceans.