Green Oxford encourages students to ‘Take Back the Tap’

Fall 2011 –

Members of Miami University’s Green Oxford conducted a taste test called ‘Take Back the Tap’ on Nov. 9 and 15, in Shriver to see if students would prefer the taste more costly water over less expensive environmental friendly water.

In the taste test willing participants were given unidentified samples of water from different sources: tap, filtered, Miami bottled, and Fiji. They were then asked to choose which of the four they preferred.

The results, which reflect those of other universities such as Boston University and Yale, show that a third of students prefer the taste of tap water to that of bottled or filtered.

Treasurer Blake Price said he was happy with the results. “Most people can’t really tell much of a difference between tap and bottled water, and sometimes they even prefer tap over bottled.”

Take Back the Tap is an increasingly popular campaign started by Food & Water Watch, a national non-profit organization that advocates policies and movements that support better food and water quality.

Food & Water Watch is dedicated to helping people take charge of where their food comes from, keep clean and affordable public tap water flowing freely to our homes, protect the environmental quality of oceans, force government to do its job protecting citizens, and educate people about the importance of keeping the global commons.

In 2007 alone, the production of bottled water in the United States required 32 million barrels of oil. Producing bottled water also uses up to 2000 times the energy cost of producing tap water between making the plastic bottles, extracting water from the ground, and distribution. This does not include the energy used to dispose of the bottles after use.

Not only is tap water more friendly for the environment, it is also more friendly for your wallet. A gallon of tap water costs between 0.002 and 0.003 cents, one hundred times cheaper than many bottled brands.

Green Oxford plans to conduct more of these taste tests at other locations around campus, such as the Recreational Center and Farmer School of Business, to encourage students to ‘Take Back the Tap.’

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