Tap or Bottled? YOU decide


Presented by the Ontario Ministry of the Environment

You’ve just spent all day running around under the blazing hot sun and you’re thirstier than a cactus in the desert! You get inside and the first thing you do is run to the fridge to grab an ice cold bottle of wa – Stop. Right. There. Were you going to say “bottle of water”?

tap, bottle, water, conservationThere are a couple things you should know before you toss back that 350 ml of plastic-encased ice-cold goodness. Did you know that more than 100 million empty water bottles end up in landfills every year?  And that’s just in Toronto! Imagine what that adds up to across Ontario, or Canada, or the world! Sure, some get recycled, but with literally billions of bottles getting tossed every year, there’s just not enough room on this planet for all of that waste.

Did you also know that our tap water is actually the least expensive, most environmentally friendly option when it comes to hydration? The truth is our tap water is tops. Don’t believe it? Looks like it’s time for a face-off, or rather, an H2-Off.

Tap vs. bottled water: The basics

A.  Cost

Hmmm well, tap water costs A LOT less than bottled water. Bottled water on the other hand can cost anywhere from 50 cents to a couple of dollars.

B. Convenience

You might think bottled water is more convenient. It’s pre-packaged and easy to grab when you’re on your way out the door, but, don’t forget, first you have to buy it and bring it home. Tap water is already there, you just need to, well, turn the tap on.

C. Taste

Taste is a personal thing, but considering that one quarter of the bottled water sold in Canada is actually reprocessed tap water, you shouldn’t notice much of a difference. Canadians enjoy very high quality, clean tap water.

D.  Impact on the planet

There is a floating pile of plastic garbage in the Pacific Ocean that is bigger than Ontario. Plastic bottles are a huge contributor to this. Not to mention that making plastic bottles, filling them with water, and then transporting them all over the world produces large amounts of greenhouse gases. Opt for tap and reduce your carbon footprint and the number of water bottles landing in landfills!
And the clear winner is (drum roll please!) TAP. So next time you’re confronted with the choice, you can feel confident knowing Ontario ensures safe drinking water right out of the tap!


So, if you haven’t already made the switch to tap water, now’s the time!

Avoiding bottled water will not only help you save money, it can help cut down on plastic waste, dependence on fossil fuels, and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions!

  • If you have to use bottled water, be sure to recycle the bottle!
  • Learn more about how plastic is ending up in our oceans in The Problem with Plastic

Download the Ministry of the Environment’s Tap vs Bottled Water Article and Activity

Help the Ministry of the Environment and Earth Rangers

protect our natural world. Together we can make a difference.



Earth Rangers is a non-profit organization that works to inspire and educate children about the environment. At EarthRangers.com kids can play games, discover amazing facts, meet animal ambassadors and fundraise to protect biodiversity.


  1. I did the mission! We do not like the tap water or the bottle water. We use a pitcher that we put the water in to make the water clean, so we can use the tap water for us and our pets.