The Ethics of Bottled Water


We all know how wasteful bottled water is, but now it's getting theological. We quote Martin Mittelstaedt of the Globe and Mail: Some churches are starting to urge congregants to boycott bottled water, citing ethical, theological and social justice reasons. Bottled water, they argue, is morally tainted and should be avoided. "Water is seen increasingly as a saleable commodity, [being used] to make a profit," said David Hallman, a United Church official, "as opposed to our perspective of it being an element of life and good for all creation." Mr. Hallman expressed concern that the bottled- water phenomenon is part of a broader trend toward the privatization of water distribution systems, and it was antipathy toward privatization, more than any other factor, that led church members in August to approve a boycott call. "Bottling and selling of water undermines in our perspective the use of a public good and public responsibility to provide water," he said. ::Globe and Mail and ::United Church of Canada