News > News > Drink Tap Water > Riverkeeper Salutes Paterson for Phasing Out Bottled Water

Riverkeeper Salutes Paterson for Phasing Out Bottled Water

May 6, 2009

Contact: Andrea Kott
(914) 478-4501 x 239
[email protected]

May 6, 2009 (Tarrytown, NY) – Riverkeeper applauds Gov. David A. Paterson for making the environment a top priority by signing an Executive Order phasing out New York State’s purchase and use of bottled water. The Order will gradually stop government spending on single serve as well as cooler-size water bottles that state agencies use. It also requires each executive agency to stop buying bottled water and to make ordinary tap water available, through water fountains and dispensers.

This policy change is a major win for Riverkeeper, which joined a coalition of environmental groups in lobbying the state to stop buying and using bottled water in state agencies.

“We are pleased that Governor Paterson is making New York a leader in curbing our national addiction to bottled water,” said Hudson Riverkeeper Alex Matthiessen. “For decades, we have turned our back on municipal water in favor of bottled water which has been bad for our environment and bad for our wallets. Take our water fountains – in both office buildings and public spaces – which have fallen into disrepair, depriving New Yorkers of easy access to New York’s safe and delicious municipal drinking water. Governor Paterson’s order gives us the incentive to reinvest in our public water supply and deliver systems.”

Last year, Riverkeeper launched a tap water campaign to educate New Yorkers about the health, economic and environmental benefits of drinking tap water. Riverkeeper is the public watchdog of the New York City watershed, which supplies up to 1.5 billion gallons of unfiltered, top-quality drinking water per day to more than 9 million people. Tap water is actually safer than bottled water, because it is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency and is tested multiple times each day, while no government agency tests bottled water.

Bottled water is also a thousand times more expensive than tap water, and its production and transportation across hundreds or thousands of miles causes pollution, which contributes to global warming. Plus, approximately 85% of the empty plastic water bottles in the U.S. end up in the garbage instead of being recycled, adding about 2 million tons of plastic bottles in U.S. landfills each year. New York is now the third state to end the purchase and use of bottled water.

Riverkeeper is an independent member-supported environmental organization. Riverkeeper’s mission is to protect the Hudson River, and its tributaries, and the New York City drinking water supply.

For more information, please visit

Tell Gov. Hochul to block invasive species at the Erie and Champlain canals
Become a Member