Germans urged to ditch bottled water to protect the environment

Germans urged to ditch bottled water to protect the environment

If you’ve ever made the mistake of ordering a glass of Leitungswasser in a restaurant, you’ll know that Germany as a country is somewhat suspicious of tap water. Now, however, the government is calling for people to go green by ditching bottled water and turning on the tap. 

Germans urged to switch to tap water

Despite the fact that their tap water is among the cleanest and safest in Europe, plenty of people in Germany continue to opt for bottled water instead. The German penchant for sparkling water is certainly one reason behind this - where else in the world would you find sparkling water that is graded according to its fizziness, from “classic” (you know, very fizzy - as nature intended) to “medium”? Accordingly, since 1980, per capita consumption of bottled water in Germany has increased from under 40 litres per year, to 147,7 litres in 2018. 

But with inventions such as Sodastreams now making it possible to make your own sparkling water at home, environment minister Svenja Schulze is calling the German population out on its not-very-environmentally-friendly reliance on bottled water. “Drinking tap water saves money, energy and unnecessary packaging,” she said. Estimates show that a litre of bottled water produces around 171 times as much CO2 as a litre of tap water. 

More drinking fountains in Germany

With a view to promoting tap water consumption across the country, Schulze has therefore unveiled plans for a 1,3-million-euro “Wasserwende” (water transformation) project, spearheaded by a newly-founded association named: “A Tip: Tap”. 

As well as informing people about the benefits of drinking tap water, the project will focus on setting up public drinking fountains and “refill stations” throughout Germany, where people can drink and fill reusable bottles for free. The association will work together with local authorities, water supply companies and other drinking water initiatives. So get yourself a reusable water bottle in preparation!



Abi Carter

Managing Editor at IamExpat Media. Abi studied German and History at the University of Manchester and has since lived in Berlin, Hamburg and Utrecht, working since 2017 as a writer,...

Read more



Leave a comment

LA Sulehri 11:31 | 17 August 2019

Hi! I am from pakistan and I was amazed that why dont people encourage to drink tap water here in Deutschland even though they have drinkable tap water? Or perhaps people may have more confidence on Mineral water over tap water or they may have health insecurity while drinking tap water?