Over the last month, there has been many reports and publicity on the damage plastic bottles are doing to the environment. While shops and other outlets within cities and towns have already seen the plastic bag tax extended, should we be doing more to minimise the impact of plastic bottles.
One of the biggest uses is bottled Water. In a survey carried out in 2017, figures showed how many of us prefer a bottle of water over getting tap water.
‘three in five (59%) say they would be more likely to use a reusable water bottle if tap water refills were more freely available in places such as shops, airports and parks’
The YouGov survey, commissioned by BRITA UK and Keep Britain Tidy, also found that 57% of people believe businesses that serve food and/or drinks should be required to provide free drinking water to the public, regardless of whether they are a customer or not.
Currently, licensed premises including bars, theatres and restaurants are legally required to provide free drinking water on request in England, Scotland and Wales, although they can charge for the use of a glass. Despite this, 71% of people are uncomfortable asking for free tap water in a glass without buying something else and more than a third (37%) feel awkward asking for it in a reusable bottle even if they are making a purchase.
It is already great to see some local authorities and community groups taking up the scheme including Cornwall, Bristol, Devon and Norwich.
How can Business Improvement Districts, tap into this?
There are many ways a BID can support his campaign, here are a few ideas:
As a Bid already has great contacts with local businesses of all types, they are best place to reach out to firstly promote the use of providing water to consumers or staff. For ideas and marketing, check out the Refill website which also has an app where it maps out where you can get water from. Visit their website for more information.
BID’s are also greatly placed to work with local authorities and there may be scope if you have not got them already is to see if you can install water fountains into your city or town centre.
Lastly, You do have an marketing opportunity to had while supporting a campaign. Why not look at giving away free refill water bottles which can be branded with your BID or Town Centre. These could be handed out to staff who work for your levy payers or consumers who come to your town.