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Let’s End Our Love Affair with Water Bottles – Travelers Against Plastic

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Last year, our family traveled to Namibia with 600 other intrepid travelers for the annual Adventure Travel World Summit.  Given Namibia's recent nod by the New York Times, as number 6 of the 52 Places to Go in 2014, we were not disappointed at all when witnessing amazing wildlife in the Kalahari Desert, staying in phenomenal lodges in Namib Desert, and learning about communal conservancies.  By the same token though, we could not understand why, at every turn, tiny 8 ounce water bottles were distributed (and wasted), rather than the option to refill our reusable water containers with fresh water.


Giant containers full of water bottles (most of them private label) were de rigueur for tourists. It was nearly impossible for us to use our reusable water containers.  We were confused, frustrated and later relieved by the collective outcry of the more than 600 summit attendees that we should be setting an example by joining the mission of Travelers Against Plastic (TAP).

According to TAP, whose mission is to rid our collective American thirst for plastic water bottles, by encouraging the use of reusable water containers, SteriPEN and water purification tablets, travelers can stop leaving behind thousands of plastic water bottles in mountain, coastal, and desert communities.

For example, if Americans specifically stopped buying single use water bottles while traveling, an estimated 3.5 billion plastic water bottles would be taken off the market resulting in substantial savings for the environment and the local communities who are responsible for the use, reuse and disposal of plastic waste.

Greenloons has always been in support of using reusable water containers and other water saving measures (as explained in this infographic). Now, there's a way for you – the traveler – to support this effort as well.  If you would like to support TAP with their efforts, they are offering a special Klean Kanteen edition water bottle where 25% of the purchase price will be donated to TAP.

Just another way to join in and help communities in the process!


Check out some trips that help to support local communities in North America through travel!

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Tagged in: Green Living Namibia

Irene is the founder & president of Greenloons. She is a dual EU citizen who has lived in 5 countries and visited 32 more in Asia, Oceania, Latin America and Europe. Drawing upon her professional and personal experiences to address authentic ecotourism from community, ecological and financial points of view, Irene is a frequent conference speaker, Huffington Post blogger and radio talk show guest. 


  • Guest
    Clare Hancock Friday, 16 May 2014

    Thank you for posting about this experience. We are big fans of Travelers Against Plastic and we jump at every chance to spread the word about reusable water bottles and sterilization systems like GRAYL and Steri-PEN. It is encouraging to hear that so many people at the summit spoke out against the use of plastic water bottles. I hope we will see more action like this as we continue to travel. Thank you again.
    - Clare Hancock at Immersion Travel Magazine

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