Gavin Newsom, the mayor of San Francisco, is campaigning once more against bottled water. Last year, Newsom banned city government from spending tax dollars on bottled water for its employees. Now, Newsom has asked restaurateurs to serve tap water instead of bottled water, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
Newsom cites the bottles' tendency to clog landfills and pollute the environment. He acknowledges that restaurants make a significant profit on bottled water and that not everyone is going to be able to comply.
Alice Waters' Chez Panisse restaurant was one of the first to serve house-made sparkling water. Last year, famed restaurateur Mario Batali stopped offering bottled water in his New York City restaurant Del Posto. Other restaurants have followed suit.
San Francisco residents can rest easy knowing that the American Waterworks Association Research Foundation found San Francisco's water almost alone in being free of contaminants, such as medicines, household cleaners and cosmetics. The paper says that blind taste tests have also shown that the city's water tastes as good as, and in some cases better than, bottled water.
There are opponents to the mayor's request: Stephen Kay, a spokesman for the International Bottled Water Association, is quoted in the article. "We're not in a totalitarian state. It's all about consumer choice, and consumers should be free to make those choices without having them foisted upon them."
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