Home Sustainability Eco Offenders in Packaged Water Category Revealed in New Study

Eco Offenders in Packaged Water Category Revealed in New Study


HOLLAND, MICH.—Boxed Water Is Better—the first sustainable alternative in the package water category—is publicly releasing a  life cycle study, conducted by sustainability experts Anthesis Group, which compares the cumulative environmental impacts between a 500ML PET plastic bottle, a 500ML aluminum can, and a 500ML carton of Boxed Water. The full report is available via this link.

“With respect to the planet, we need to tap into the much broader impact story beyond recycling,” said Boxed Water CMO, Robert Koenen. “All three materials are recyclable. Yet, recycling alone doesn’t address the front-end of the problem: the environmental impact of oil drilling and blow molding needed for food grade plastic…and the strip mining and smelting required for aluminum.”

In assessing PET plastic bottles versus Boxed Water cartons, Anthesis found that Boxed Water has a 36 percent lower carbon footprint (that’s global warming), 43 percent less fossil fuel use, and 95 percent lower impact on our ozone.

After decades of nationwide recycling initiatives, only 25 percent of the 42.6 billon plastic bottles of water sold in the U.S. each year are actually recycled. The rest ends up in our landfills or waterways, or adds to air pollution when incinerated. By 2050, it is anticipated that there will be more plastic than fish in our oceans.

Boxed Water Better Than Aluminum

“Big Soda” companies including Coke and Pepsi will soon be offering their water brands in aluminum cans as better-than-plastic alternatives. However, compared to aluminum, the Anthesis study found Boxed Water has a 20 percent lower impact on ozone depletion, 50 percent lower smog emissions, and a 66 percent lower impact on acidification due to deforestation.

Aluminum is also a finite material derived from a mineral called bauxite which is strip-mined, crushed, and smelted in a process that requires tremendous heat, water and energy. It takes approximately 20 tons of bauxite to make 1 ton of aluminum. Thus, more than 120 million tons of bauxite waste is produced annually.

“Our official name is Boxed Water Is Better because refillable options are best,” acknowledged Koenen. “Still there are many industries—hospitality, travel, entertainment, sports, restaurants and more—that will continue to offer packaged water for the foreseeable future, especially in this pandemic age. When considering more sustainable options, the impact of extraction and production need to be part of the social conversation. With this research, our goal is to elevate our consciousness around sustainable efforts and purchasing decisions.”

Not all carton water is created equal. This year, Boxed Water became the most sustainable brand in the water category, at 92 percent plant-based with a new plant-based cap. Boxed Water’s cap is derived from residue waste from FSC-certified sustainably grown trees used for pulp and bioenergy, rather than specifically grown for plastic, and has lower CO2 emissions than petroleum and sugarcane. Every Boxed Water carton is created mostly of paper sourced from trees in well managed forests, shipped flat to reduce transportation impacts, and filled close to the source.

To learn more about Boxed Water, visit https://boxedwaterisbetter.com/.