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Non-Potable "Drinking Water" Bottles

I got your ethos, right here...
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(+3, -1)
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Starbuck's will sell you a small bottle of water for over $2 called "Ethos Water"; it states that "10c from each bottle sold goes to improving drinking water in coffee-producing countries", which makes you wonder about their profit margins on their $3 coffees if 10c is going to make any bit of a difference, but anyways ...

The idea is to ship bottles of _non_drinkable water in from places where they have total crap drinking water, and sell that instead. Buy the water, pour it down the sink in the bathroom, refill with local tap water and go about your day.

The profit goes straight to that country's waterworks for improvement and the crap water goes down the drain in a country that can properly treat it.

FlyingToaster, Sep 25 2012

The Great Stink http://en.wikipedia...iki/The_Great_Stink
Under the noses of lawmakers … [8th of 7, Sep 25 2012]

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       // The idea is to ship bottled water in from places where they have total crap drinking water and sell that instead. //   

       They already do that. In every second- and third-world country I've ever visited (Egypt, Morroco, Tunisia, Mexico, and Utah), I drank nothing but locally-bought bottled water, most of it shipped from the US.
Alterother, Sep 25 2012

       Right, so this is that but backwards.   

       If you're going to shoot off a few cents to improve drinking water somewhere else, why not just ship their non-potable water here in little bottles.   

       They get more of the profit, the end consumer has a handy stage-prop to show people what life's like elsewhere, or the non-potable water from overseas can just get dumped out and potable water from the tap substituted.   

       I never said it made too much sense, but there's some symmetry to the scheme.
FlyingToaster, Sep 25 2012

       Well thats good because it makes absolutely no sense except as sort of a sarcastic comment on humanitarian initiatives. Since that's what it is congratulations you've made some sense. However the idea makes no cents due to the fact that shipping worthless crap here to be disposed of benefits nobody, and nobody is going to buy the water from some poor village's toilet/ bathing / drinking ditch except maybe to throw into the hair or eyes of a loathed enemy. And you can forget about reusing that bottle unless it has been sanitized by nothing other than the fire of burning holy books. Nothing else can vanquish the evils of bum worm and whatever else ungodly worms.
rcarty, Sep 25 2012

       *headdesk* This gag-making 'Ethos' nonsense from companies like Starbucks does make me cross. If they really gave a damn they'd sell customers a glass of water at a fraction of the cost and give the proceeds of that to countries for their sustainable water infrastructure but then none of the hip do-gooder businesses have any clues as to how, in some climates, that can actually be achieved.
Phrontistery, Sep 25 2012

       [rc] it's doubly sarcastic actually: I might buy it if it was "donate to sewage treatment plant design" rather than "make drinking water".   

       <deja rant>   

       The solution to poor drinking water quality, in almost all cases, is "stop pissing and shitting in your water supply".   

       Simple reasoning: it might be more "human" to piss and crap in the nest, or be civilized and pipeline it into somebody else's nest, but all that does is infect plant and animal life and the water table.   

       Build a pipeline, paint it black to kill off bacteria en route, and pump that stuff somewhere it can't harm anything, as the very simplest solution.   

       All that money wasted on teaching people how to purify water they've already crapped in, better spent teaching them not to crap in their drinking water.   

FlyingToaster, Sep 25 2012

       The bottle of non-potable water (suitable marked and permanently sealed) would serve as tangible proof of one's charity. Sell them for $20 each.   

       I applaud this idea.
Voice, Sep 25 2012

       I might be about to get flamed here, but besides this being a dumb idea (it would cost more to ship a bottle of shitty water all the way around the world than you would make in donations) throwing charity at 3rd world countries isn't a solution. "Here, have the million dollars we made selling shitty water. Problem solved right?!" > money disappears, people continue drinking brown stream water, problem is 0% solved.
DIYMatt, Sep 25 2012

       Nothing will be done until the problem directly impinges on those in government.   

8th of 7, Sep 25 2012

       //This ... does make me cross.//   

       [Phrontistery], if you're not already English, you should apply.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 25 2012

       [Max] - although ideally [Phrontistery] should have described him/herself as "quite cross" or "rather cross". Just "cross" sounds a little confrontational.
hippo, Sep 26 2012

Phrontistery, Sep 26 2012

       After all, "cross" is only a step away from the terrifying "not very pleased about that, to be honest".
8th of 7, Sep 26 2012

       However, an awareness about Starbucks brands and sales is a rather serious factor that goes against such a recommendation.
pocmloc, Sep 26 2012

       More overpriced soulless monoculture. It's bad enough people in poor countries are paying franchise fees to serve piss from the U.S. instead of say, local juices for the same price
4and20, Sep 26 2012

       //piss from the U.S. instead of say, local juices for the same price// You greatly overestimate the quality of local products. Starbucks is usually better. I'm not buying this indie coffee shop stuff, I've been to every coffee shop in several cities and Starbucks remains my favorite for the consistency. Yeah, their daily brew is crap and frappuccinos are stupid but the espresso is great.
DIYMatt, Sep 27 2012

       [Alterother]: //every second- and third-world country I've ever visited ([...] Utah), I drank nothing but locally- bought bottled water//   

       It'd probably be more accurate to just say "locally- bottled". Desert though this may be, bottled water is an export item here, not import.   

       So you could have (most likely) gotten the same water (without the BPA from the plastic) by just drinking from the tap. (With, admittedly, some local exceptions, like the town of Magna, where the way to a brilliant green lawn is to replace the sod with concrete, then water it from the culinary system - or the small burg called Caineville, where I once rusted a toilet completely shut in one night by failing to dip the water out of the bowl)
lurch, Sep 27 2012

       I was actually kidding about Utah. In reality, I never left the attractive and comfortable terminal of your lovely airport, and I drank water from the public fountain. It wasn't one of the highlights of my trip, but not an unpleasant experience.
Alterother, Sep 27 2012

       It would be a good rhetorical device but the energy required is too high to justify it. I suggest two other possibilities. Firstly, fake Third World water from a local source but of the same quality. Secondly, "defiling" tablets which can be added to tapwater to make it as dirty as theirs, possibly also made locally, perhaps from cafe toilet sewage.   

       Regarding Starbucks, my recollection is that good-quality coffee was available here in the provinces many years before they arrived. I suppose it might have stimulated other chains in London to open elsewhere, but at least here in Leicester, Starbucks is a relatively recent upstart compared to a load of other cafes which have done their kind of stuff for many years. They are, however, distinctive in being much more expensive than the others.
nineteenthly, Sep 27 2012

       Utah is one of the few places on your planet where being repeatedly bombed by the USAF represents a genuine environmental improvement. St. George isn't bad, but Moab is about as much fun as walking round in a freshly fired brick kiln. As for Salt Lake City, well, see the first paragraph about bombing.
8th of 7, Sep 27 2012

       Notably Italy, as the Mecca of café culture, has not a Starbucks anywhere in sight. Long may that continue.
Phrontistery, Sep 27 2012

       English people drink tea, not coffee.
pocmloc, Sep 27 2012

       I"m not actually dissing Starbucks, aside from the bottled water bit which I find rather silly: they've obviously got somebody who can rub two sticks together picking out locations for their franchises, and the atmosphere is different enough from the national standard "Timmy's" (donut shop) to make for an occasional change of pace.
FlyingToaster, Sep 27 2012

       ...and it still amazes me when travelling to the USA and Canada how impossible it is to get a proper cup of tea in any hotel or restaurant (rant, grumble). As [19thly] points out coffee has long been available in the UK. For example London has a large number of Portugese and Italian-owned coffee shops dating from the 1950's and 1960's which serve a robust 'continental' coffee which contrasts with the weaker American-style coffee which Starbucks serves.
hippo, Sep 27 2012

       [8th], your comment about Moab makes me think you have the soul of a poet.   

       In a bottle, salted and packed with bitter herbs, and bound with the hair of a starving witch.
lurch, Sep 28 2012

       Vinegar, bile, gall and wormwood.
8th of 7, Sep 28 2012

       That narrows down your temporal and geographical location with startling accuracy …
8th of 7, Sep 28 2012

       [8th] Your ability to reach that conclusion probably narrows down your temporal and geographical location with startling accuracy too. Either that, or you and [bigsleep] are Half Man Half Biscuit fans.
hippo, Sep 28 2012

       I'm English, only drink tea on the twenty-eighth of April each year, and rarely even then.
nineteenthly, Sep 28 2012

       That's a strange way of commemorating International Workplace Safety Day, but I'm not judging...
Alterother, Sep 28 2012


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