A commodity that's widely available practically free is also on sale for thousands of times the actual cost, repackaged as a luxury item. It's transported around the country and even across the world, generating untold volumes of CO2. It's water, of course. The Washington Post looks at a marketing effort that has Americans paying top dollar for repackaged tap water—and the emerging backlash.
"There are hundreds of millions spent marketing bottled water as pure and clean and better, and that implies the tap water is not pure and clean and better," says one environmentalist. "Public utilities do not have PR budgets and do not have money to advertise their wares and tell us their water is pure."