Plastics are Forever

Plastics: 700 years to decompose

Basic Facts About Plastic
and Bottled Water

  • On average, bottle water costs 2000 times more than tap water. (The Story of Bottled Water)
  • People in the U.S. buy more than half a BILLION bottles of water every week! Enough to circle the globe twice. (The Story of Bottled Water)
  • 1/3 of all bottled water sold in the United States is repackaged tap water, including Aquafina (Pepsi Co.) and Dasani (Coca Cola). (Grist)
  • Plastic is made from petroleum. Making the plastic water bottles used in the U.S. in one year takes enough oil and energy to fuel a million cars. (The Story of Bottled Water)
  • Americans throw out 38 billion empty water bottles a year, more than $1 billion worth of plastic. (Fast Company)
  • 80% of the single-use plastic bottles from bottled water consumed in the U.S. end up in landfills. (Surfrider Foundation)
  • In 1976, the average American drank 1.6 gallons of bottled water a year. In 2007, that number had increased to an average of 28.3 gallons per person. (Fast Company)
  • Federal and state regulations require that municipal water sources be tested for bacteria hundreds of times per month (every few hours). Bottled water plants have to test their water once a week! (Natural Resources Defense Council)
  • Tap water must be tested for cryptosporidium, giardia and viruses. There is no law or regulation requiring bottled water companies to test for these parasites or viruses. (Natural Resources Defense Council)
  • In the U.S. alone, more than 24 billion pounds of plastic packaging is produced every year. Most of that packaging is designed for single usage, meaning it’s designed to be thrown out as soon as that package is opened. (Surfrider Foundation)
  • Worldwide, human beings use more than 1 trillion plastic shopping bags a year. (Surfrider Foundation)
  • Every reusable bag bought or distributed prevents about 400 plastic bags from being used. (Surfrider Foundation)
  • Every 13 plastic bags saved equals enough petroleum to drive a car one mile. (Surfrider Foundation)

Can you imagine going one day without using anything made with plastic? No computer. No pens. No Tupperware. No plastic trash bags. No car. No phone. No music. No toilet paper if you use the kind that comes wrapped in plastic. It would be nearly impossible. Plastic is integrated into every aspect of our lives. And unless it’s incinerated, every piece of plastic that you use will be on this planet for hundreds, maybe even thousands, of years. “All the plastic that has been made is still around in smaller and smaller pieces," said Stephanie Barger, executive director of the Earth Resource Foundation, in an article about plastic printed by

When it doesn’t end up in our landfills, most plastic eventually makes its way to our oceans, where each year millions of fish, birds, and other animals die from plastic because they eat it or they get caught in it. The United Nations Environment Programme estimates that more than 13,000 pieces of plastic litter are floating in every square kilometer of the ocean worldwide. The Surfrider Foundation estimates that more than half of the litter on beaches is plastic. Many researchers and environmental organizations now list plastic as the number one threat to our marine environments around the planet. In addition, chemicals in some plastics have been linked by researchers to a laundry list of diseases, including breast cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, liver abnormalities, and prostate cancer. It can seem a little overwhelming.

Klean Kanteen was founded to give you another choice, something better for your body and the planet. Klean Kanteens are made using high quality, food-grade stainless steel, one of the safest materials available for cooking, containing, or transporting human food and beverage – that’s good for you. And using a Klean Kanteen for daily personal hydration instead of reaching for single-use, bottled water cuts back on plastic waste – that’s good for the planet.

Klean Kanteens are also made with a purposeful bottle design that strikes a balance between weight and durability; light enough to put in a young child’s lunchbox, yet strong enough to last a lifetime. We lab test our stainless steel bottles regularly, and we know for a fact that Klean Kanteens don’t leach toxins or organic chemicals like bisphenol A into your drinks. Plus, Klean Kanteens keep your drinks tasting just like when you poured them in. We also make our caps from polypropylene, a plastic that does not contain bisphenol A, and customers have the option of a stainless steel cap if you want to avoid plastic coming in contact with your drink at all.

We’re proud to offer you a healthy, sustainable alternative to plastic bottles and we want to thank you for being part of the change we at Klean Kanteen believe is possible.

Feature Articles on Bottled Water

  • EWG Bottle Water Report"Bottle Water Report"
    Environmental Working Group
    January 2011

    What's in your bottled water? Pure, clean water. That's what the ads say. But what does the lab say? You have a right to know what's inside that plastic bottle.
  • Fast Company "Message in a Bottle"
    Fast Company
    July 2007

    Americans spent more money last year on bottled water than on ipods or movie tickets. Journey into the economics of an unlikely business boom. And what it says about our culture.
  • Reader's Digest "Bottled vs. Tapped"
    Reader's Digest
    February 2007

    Chemicals, contaminants, pollution, price: new reasons to rethink what you drink and beware of bottled water.

Learn More about Plastics, Alternatives and How You Can Make a Difference:

* denotes an article used to compile the info and statistics on this page

News Articles about Plastic Pollution:

We have compiled a few news stories about plastics, bottled water, pollution, and other related issues. If you know of a great article we should include here, please email

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