Plastic Bottle Ban in National Parks: Common sense or Controversy

Editor’s note:  This article was originally published several weeks ago on  It includes some useful information you might appreciate.

Grand Canyon National Park could soon ban plastic water bottles (photo by Moyan Brenn)

One culprit is causing nearly a third of the waste in our national parks. It’s something you might grab for a long hike, or camping, or washing down a meal cooked over the campfire. It comes in a convenient yet remarkably wasteful package, and it’s become an unlikely source of controversy. That culprit is bottled water.

Shawn Norton, who works on climate change and sustainability issues for the National Park Service, says in a January 2010 internal memo that banning disposable bottles would reduce waste, cut recycling costs, and save electricity. In fact, if just 15 parks (including Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Death Valley and Grand Teton) banned bottled water, the savings could be 18 million kilowatt hours per year!

For more on the impact and controversy of banning plastic bottles in our national parks, see

One Response

  1. Hi as far as I’m concerned they should completely stop making plastic water bottles, they take so much time and energy to use and have an average usage time of about two hours – so inefficient!

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