Should sales of bottled water be banned from schools?

Mar 02, 2012 | By TIME For Kids Staff

In 2009, Washington University in St. Louis became the first college in the United States to stop selling bottled water. Since then, more than a dozen small colleges have done the same. The ban isn’t because the schools don’t want students to have easy access to water. Instead, the goal is to encourage students to bring reusable bottles to save money and, more importantly, to save the environment.

Many people believe that producing and using bottled water wastes money and harms the environment. They say that bottled water is unnecessary because public water supplies in the U.S. are among the best in the world. These people believe that water fountains and reusable bottles with easy access to filling stations are a better choice.

But the makers of bottled water argue that plastic bottles make up a small portion of the nation's total waste. They say it's unfair to single out their product when so many other items are packaged in plastic containers. Plus, water is a healthy option compared to some sodas and juices that are also sold at school.

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