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Tapped / A Documentary On Bottled Water

Updated on July 19, 2014
Tapped Movie Poster
Tapped Movie Poster

“Tapped” was an eye-opening documentary for me. I first came across this film when researching an early post about bottled water. As an environmentalist I have always tried to limit my bottled water consumption. I understood the wastefulness of the process even though I did not have the actual numbers. This film was able to present those figures in a way that was clear and easy to understand. I recently showed it to a class in an attempt to give them a bigger picture of water privatization.

This documentary does a thorough job in its investigation of how a simple thing like bottled water has far-reaching effects. It goes beyond the resources needed in creating the product. They show how only a few companies produce the majority of bottled water. The health issues behind consuming water from these plastic containers is explored, along with a personal look at the physical harm inflicted on the communities located next to these factories. What I found particularly fascinating and troubling was how these companies deplete a town’s water source even in times of drought when residents who live in the area are forced to ration their water use. I always knew about the harmful chemicals spewed from factories, but it never occurred to me that a company would not be restricted from water use during a drought.

There is a lot of time spent in the film highlighting the lack of environmental and health oversight by the government. Most of the testing and regulation is dependent on the companies themselves doing these test. They interview the sole person at the FDA who is responsible for overseeing the bottled water industry. It shows not a lack of caring by the people involved, but a lack of personnel and authority. A lot of water never crosses a state line and thus is not under the jurisdiction of the federal government.

You can visit the movie’s website at to find out more about bottled water and water privatization. They also provide you with ways to take action and protect our water resources.


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