Water. Last month we had too much, and basements flooded. Last week we had too little and much of the Boston area had to boil their water in the wake of the pipe failure.

How do you use water in your home? Do you empty your water glasses, or the kids’ water bottles into the sink and then fill the watering can to water houseplants? Do you run a dehumidifier in your house? When you empty the tank, where does that water go? Could you use it to soak dishes in the sink?

During the boiled water order, many people chose to buy bottled water rather than boil the available water and bottle it at home. Fortunately we didn’t have to worry about this here in Needham, but it provides an opportunity to think about our choices.

Using reusable bottles in our schools and homes means we buy less plastic to begin with, use less energy to transport water, and use fewer services to dispose of the bottle when the water is gone (not to mention that our tap water is often better for you than the water sold bottled). Recycling can start when you choose not to use. It’s time we start thinking beyond the bottle!

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