A new annual event is aiming to convince Haligonians to forgo bottled water and love their taps.

Clean Nova Scotia hosted Halifax’s first annual Bottled Water Free Day Thursday at Grand Parade in the city’s downtown. Volunteers handed out reusable water bottles to passersby in exchange for their signature on an “I Love Halifax Tap Water” poster.

According to Clean Nova Scotia spokeswoman Shelley Bellafontaine, HRM’s clean tap water is a viable alternative to environmentally costly plastic water bottles.

“We want to encourage citizens to consider drinking our excellent quality tap water ... as an alternative to buying bottled water,” she said. “We’re not anti-consumerism concerning the water bottle industry, but what we want people to consider is the cost to the environment.”

Bellafontaine said the environmental cost of bottled water may be larger than people realize.

“It takes petroleum products to create a plastic water bottle ... (and) transportation costs are incurred to get that bottle to market,” said Bellafontaine. “So the greenhouse gas emissions that are released as a result of getting a bottle to market can be prohibitive.”

Bellafontaine also noted the personal economic costs of buying bottled water.

Sydney native Pat Almon concurs.

“Why buy water when it comes out of the tap anyway? It’s like paying for it twice,” she said.

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