The results show that, if the entire population of Barcelona were to choose bottled water, the environmental impact would be equivalent to losing 1.4 species per year, and the cost of resource extraction would be 84 million USD per year. This impact would be 1,400 and 3,500 times smaller, respectively, if the whole population were to drink tap water. The health impact assessment shows that, due to the high quality of the tap water in Barcelona, the risk to health due to chemicals linked to the water disinfection process is very low (estimated at 2 hours of lost life expectancy); domestic filtration lowers this risk even further. “The risk is very small if we consider the overall impacts of bottled water,” says Villanueva.
“Our analysis clearly shows that choosing to drink tap water is best for our health and that of the planet,” concludes Cathryn Tonne.