Water ‘Kiosks’ – a big part of the solution

Philadelphia Water ‘Kiosks’ – promoting reusable water bottles

Linda Mathieson

November 13, 2015

There is a growing trend taking place around the world as people, communities, towns and cities are realising the devastating affect plastic bottles are having on the environment. With the push to reduce the amount of sugary drinks people consume another problem has arisen, the number of single use plastic water bottles purchased has grown significantly.  Most of these plastic bottles end up in waterways and landfill.

According to the Philadelphia water department, plastic bottles make up more than half the litter removed from the Schuylkill River each time it is skimmed.  Water Commissioner Howard Neukrug recently announced the installation of a network of water ‘kiosks’ that the rowing community and city officials hope will be a significant part of the solution. The ‘kiosks’ will consist of  water drinking fountains and bottle refilling stations in an effort to promote  reusable water bottles.

12000 reusable water bottles were given away at the Head of the Schuylkill Regatta, which attracts a large audience and where a number of portable water refilling stations were set up for athletes and spectators in an effort to send a message.

Philadelphia’s goal is to build a citywide partnership to eliminate litter from the river, city and watershed.

To find out more about Philadelphia’s water advocacy campaigns you can follow the story on social media using #DrinkTapPHL or read the full story here.

Dehydration may lead to poor productivity

Linda Mathieson

December 16, 2014

Do your employees have easy access to fresh, clean, chilled drinking water?

Dehydration is a common problem and by the time a person feels thirsty the chances are they are already mildly dehydrated. Our bodies are made up of 65% water and a loss of 1.5% of water is enough to become dehydrated.

It is an issue that bosses and HR managers should consider as employee dehydration may affect your business. The effects of this can include changes to mood and energy levels, dizziness, headaches, thirst and fatigue and this may lead to poor productivity. Severe dehydration can lead to blood clots and seizures which may have potentially fatal complications.

Symptoms that indicate dehydration include:

  • Bad bread due to a lack of saliva
  • Muscle cramps as a result of overheating
  • Dry skin as there is not enough water in the blood
  • Sweet food cravings due to a lack of water needed to release some glycogens from your energy banks
  • Headaches due to the fluid sack in your skull not having sufficient water and this may cause the brain to push up against the skull causing headaches

You are probably thinking that it is up to the employee to ensure they remain adequately hydrated,  and it is if drinking water is readily available, but by the time thirst hits, it is too late and could result in a negative impact on your business. We have all suffered from dehydration at some point without even realising it especially when we are very busy so it is important to address the issue of dehydration in the work place.

Employees working in factories, workshops and large facilities where the work can be hot and strenuous are more likely to become dehydrated. Raise the problem of dehydration with you staff and educate them on the benefits of drinking water and eating well.

Tips to help keep your employees hydrated

  • Give them easy access to drinking water throughout the day
  • Supply reusable water bottles
  • Install a water cooler or refill station that is within easy reach
  • Supply fruit as it is healthy and also contains water that can help in keeping dehydration under control

Keeping Kids Hydrated

The importance of keeping kids hydrated especially in the hot summer months

Linda Mathieson

October 29, 2014

It is hard to keep kids hydrated when they are playing outdoors on warm days and it is only when thirst hits that they will look for something to drink.

“Lack of water is always the most severe privation that men can be condemned to endure,” wrote Ernest Shackleton

Water is life and crucial to our everyday existence and during the hot Australian Summer months it is essential that adults and children have easy access to fresh drinking water.

Children are at greater risk of dehydration than adults as they generate more heat but sweat less which can lead to heat exhaustion and even heat stroke on a warm day.

It is imperative that children have access to fresh drinking water throughout the day, especially when playing in the playground in hot weather. Dehydration causes thickening of the blood making the heart work harder risking bad circulation which can then stop the body from cooling itself down efficiently.

By the time a child feels thirsty they are roughly 3% dehydrated so it  is important to encourage them to drink water at regular intervals throughout the day.

A child playing in a hot playground should drink between 250ml to 300ml every 15 to 20 minutes. Having access to clean fresh water at school is essential for every student to ensure they remain healthy, active and mentally alert.

Local Communities Embracing Arts and Culture

Linda Mathieson

August 27, 2014

Local communities are rich in history, culture and arts and local councils are actively involved in supporting cultural and artistic growth within local communities in an effort to improve social cohesion.

Arts and culture can be promoted within communities through cultural activities and events, library and gallery exhibitions and public art displayed in local parks and gardens. This leads to a growing sense of community and pride within local areas.

In 2004 The Australian Expert Group in Industry Studies (AEGIS) carried out a study on ‘Social Impacts of Participation in the Arts and Cultural Activities. This came about due to increasing focus on how community participation in arts and cultural activities intersect with areas of public concern such as education, crime prevention, community identity and development.

The study claims that some of the community benefits of locals participating in arts and cultural programs include:

  • Increased employment rates
  • Reduced levels of crime
  • Public art with a sense of public ownership
  • Improved social cohesion and community
  • Development of a community identity
  • Improved understanding of different cultures

Encouraging the local community to participate and identify with local culture and arts is an ongoing task. Creating visibility and accessibility is key to educating and encouraging people to embrace, experience and identify with the local culture. The end result is a growing sense of community pride and belonging.

Local councils are looking for new, versatile and innovative ways to relay the area’s history and display local and cultural artworks.

The City of Canada Bay has developed a place based approach to Public Arts and Cultural Development by creating meaningful installations and activities in a range of localities such as:

  • Liwi’s Place Mural at Timbrel Park, Five Dock
  • Public art work at Fred Kelly Place, Five dock to celebrate Aeolian Migration
  • Development of the Rainbow Serpent, a sculptural piece on the Bay Run
  • An artistic visual rundown of the area’s history on the panels of a Public aquafil™ Water Refill Station and Drinking Fountain

Arrow Alpha’s aquafil Water Refill Stations and Drinking Fountains are a great tool in promoting Arts and Cultural awareness within local communities.  They have highly visible modular panels that are versatile and have ample space for art work, storytelling, branding and promotional messaging. The aquafil units enable local art, history and culture to be taken outside and put on display for locals who would never normally visit the local library or art
gallery whilst offering them fresh drinking water at the same time.

Download PDF

aquafil Water Refill Stations take part in the LA Marathon

10 aquafil Water Refill Stations made their debut in the the 2014 LA Marahon held on Sunday March 9.

The ASICS LA Marathon draws thousands of competitors from across the USA all running to help raise funds for the LA Marathon Official Charity program.

The 46.16km (26.2 m) Stadium to Sea course was used this year and runs from Dodger Stadium to the Pacific Ocean passing through a number of LA’s famous landmarks such as the Walt Disney Concert Hall, Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, Rodeo Drive and Santa Monica Pier.

The average race time was 5:26:19 and 12,385 men and 9,119 women completed the race. The men’s winner was Gebo Burka with a time of 2:10:37 and Amane Gobena was the womens winner with a time of 2:27:37.

10 portable aquafil  Pulse Water Refill Stations with Drinking Fountains were attached to water hydrants along the race route to supply spectators with drinking water whilst watching the race. These units also displayed the Drink Tap message making them a valuable tool in promoting the use of refillable water bottles and reducing the number of one use plastic water bottles being sold.

Reduce     Reuse     Recycle    Refresh

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Providing drinking stations for the community

Westernport Water

February 27, 2014

New drinking stations installed

Westernport Water has provided the community with a convenient way to fill up their water bottles, launching three custom drinking stations in San Remo and Cowes.

The drinking stations have a fountain for use as well as refill points that allow visitors to easily top up their water bottles free of charge. Two stations feature a dog bowl built into the base of the fountain, giving pet owners the ability to give their thirsty canine companions a drink while out walking.
One drinking station has been installed at Erehwon Point in Cowes while the other two are located in the San Remo Lions Park and San Remo Foreshore area.
According to Murray Jackson, Westernport Water’s Managing Director, the drinking stations are a great addition to some of our most popular attractions.
“We are pleased to contribute to the community by providing drinking stations for people to enjoy.”
“Additionally, by drawing water directly from the local drinking supply, people can reduce the negative effect that they may have on the environment from purchasing bottled water,” he said.

Thanks to Bass Coast Shire Council and San Remo Foreshore Committee for their contribution and support to make this possible.

Read more Westernport Water

aquafil™ Water Refill Drinking Stations

Water is essential for healthy living and is crucial for sporting, mental and academic performances. Tap water represents value for money as it’s cheaper for the community than buying bottled water or other soft drinks.

The aquafil range of Water Bottle Refill Stations and Drinking Fountains serve as a dynamic educational tool in the fight to reduce plastic waste and conserve precious resources. Full colour graphics are available on most of the aquafil range and are a valuable educational tool in helping promote a sustainable way of living and encouraging a healthy lifestyle.

Refresh and refill at the new aquafil water station

City of Mandurah

Februay 27, 2014

As part of the City of Mandurah’s commitment to promoting a healthy and active lifestyle, a filtered water drink station has been installed in the popular boardwalk area.
The aquafil water fountain, installed near the Mandurah Visitor Centre in February, has already been used by hundreds of locals and visitors during the Channel Seven Mandurah Crab Fest weekend last month.
The public drink station features wheelchair accessibility and is in a well-lit and shaded area, and is also close to the Transperth Mandurah Shuttle bus stop.
The aquafil also has a built-in dog bowl so people walking their dogs in the area can give their pets a drink. Cyclists do not even have to get off their bikes to use the aquafil, as the fountains are all at the right height.
The aquafil machine was funded by the City of Mandurah through the Federal Government’s Healthy Communities Initiative, and promotes recycling and reduced wastage of plastic bottles.
Passersby are encouraged to use the fresh, filtered drinking water to refill their water bottles and increase their water intake throughout the day.
Ann-Marie Gladwell and her dogs Cassie and Lucy took advantage of the dog bowl while taking a walk through the area.

Refresh and Refill

Visit the City of Mandurah

Sugary drinks off the menu for ACT schools

February 21, 2014

THE last drinks bell has rung in Canberra’s public schools with the government moving to ban sugary drinks by the end of the year.

Vending machines will be emptied of soft drinks, fruit juices and full-fat flavoured milks by the end of first term and canteens will have to phase them out by the end of 2014.

They’ll be replaced with water refill stations and reusable drink bottles.

Parents will be encouraged to send healthy drinks packed in their children’s lunch boxes.

However the ban won’t extend to drinks sold at fetes and fundraisers.

It’s all in the interests of tackling the ACT’s growing obesity problem.

“We must not allow the next generation of children to grow up with the same bad eating and drinking habits that some adults are now paying the price for,” Chief Minister Katy Gallagher said in a statement on Friday.

The fruit juice industry says the government’s decision to include its products in the ban is a misguided attempt to show leadership.

“The ACT government is jumping at shadows and is concerned about the sugar in juice which is naturally occurring and comes from the originating piece of fruit,” Fruit Juice Australia chief executive Geoff Parker told AAP.

“We don’t support a young kid drinking a litre of juice or a 600mL of juice but a small glass of juice a day as part of an overall balanced diet is perfectly fine.”

He said a blanket ban sent the wrong message to children when evidence showed kids who drank juice had a better quality of diet overall.

Ms Gallagher said canteens would follow the traffic light guidelines so juices that were 99 per cent fruit and sold in small quantities would be for sale occasionally, along with some cordials and flavoured mineral waters.

She said it was expected for industry to push back against the decision.

More than 24,500 chemicals found in bottled water

By Dr Jenifer Landa, Wellness Watch

Bottled water has become a bit of a trend – specific brands with unique shapes that tell the world a little something about you. While your bottle of water might make you appear to be a purveyor of optimal hydration, it is also a red flag that you may be exposing your body to an onslaught of chemicals.

In a recent study by German researchers, nearly 25,000 chemicals were found lurking in a single bottle of water. Many of these chemicals mimic the effects of potent pharmaceuticals inside your body, according to the study published in the journal PLoS One.

The study was broken into two parts. For the initial portion, the researchers tested 18 samples of various commercially sold water bottles from around the globe. Through chemical analyses, they tested the water to determine if it interfered with the body’s estrogen and androgen receptors. Tap water was tested as well, for comparison. The researchers were shocked to learn that most of the bottled waters revealed interference with both kinds of hormone receptors; amounts as little as 0.1 ounces inhibited estrogenic activity by 60 percent and androgenic activity by 90 percent. The tap water, on the other hand, showed no activity on either form of receptor.

During the second part of the study, the scientists sought to pinpoint which chemicals were the cause of reproductive hormonal interferences. Using other forms of detection to isolate the various chemicals, the researchers found more than 24,500 different chemicals in the bottled waters – including two classes of chemicals, maleates and fumarates, which are known potent endocrine disruptors (hormonally active chemicals). Maleates and fumarates are utilized to manufacture plastic resins, which are used to make water bottles, and they may also appear as contaminants of other plastic chemicals.

Despite these alarming results, you don’t have to fear for your life, if you have been toting bottled waters around for years. Good hydration is important, and sometimes, there aren’t other options.  As a healthy adult, the occasional sip from the “toxic fountain” of bottled water won’t kill you. However, small children, women of child-bearing age, and pregnant women are at greater risk of poor outcomes when exposed to these chemicals. Effects can include stunted growth, early puberty, premature birth, infertility and early menopause – just to name a few. The remaining population should still exercise caution, as more and more research is discovering that these chemical can also trigger diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancer.

Instead, make it a habit to carry a refillable water bottle. Many cities and states are beginning to convert water fountains to more easily accommodate refilling your water bottle. This began as an effort to protect the environment, but following this study, it would appear the benefits are dual fold. Earlier this year the FDA banned bisphenol-A (BPA), a common chemical used to make plastic bottles and linings of cans, from some food-related plastics. The ban also included baby bottles and sippy cups, though manufacturers say they had already eliminated the chemical in their products. It would seem, however, BPA isn’t the only problem when it comes to chemicals leaking into the food supply.

Take control of your health. Invest in a reusable water bottle. Choosing bottles made of nontoxic glass or stainless steel are highly recommended to ensure your health and safety. Many manufacturers have begun making glass bottles covered by a rubber cover to prevent breakage and simplify your commitment to health. And, of course there is one more benefit – by choosing to carry a refillable water bottle, you avoid that $2 plus charge every time you’re thirsty.

Source from Fox



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