Italy has the highest per capita consumption of bottled mineral water in Europe, and the third worldwide.
But for those who care about their health, are conscious of their budget, or who are aware of the impact on the environment, there are many good reasons for drinking tap water or water from the city’s fountains.
Whether you are traveling or moving around the city, it is a good idea to bring along a reusable container to refill at the Milanese Waterworks network of public drinking fountains, affectionately known as vedovelle, or the 26 self-service water distributors or case dell’acqua, that dispense both still and sparkling fresh water, at zero cost.
Water is the world’s most precious commodity, and its use deserves conscious choices: take a closer look at the reasons that should inspire the right decisions.
To reduce the use of disposable plastic
Italians drink an average of 206 litres of bottled water each year, generating in the process more or less eight billion plastic bottles.
To reduce pollution
Considering that, on average, around two kg of oil are needed to obtain one kilo of PET plastic, in order to meet the annual requirement of six billion one and a half litre bottles a total of more than 450 thousand tons of oil are needed and over 1.2 million tons of CO2 are emitted. Plastic also poses a major threat to our oceans.
Because of quality controlled and guaranteed safety
Tap water in Milan is subject to very strict controls both by the Water Authority and by the Health Protection Agency. In 2018 alone, 17,461 samples were analysed. In addition to sampling, a real-time optical fibre online monitoring system of the water's main chemical-physical parameters is operational for all the water distributed in the city of Milan.
Because it’s ‘zero miles’
Tap water does not travel long: only a few hundred metres from the subterranean water table to taps in homes. In 2018, 217.6 million cubic metres of water were distributed in Milan.
Because it’s cheap
1,000 litres of tap water in Milan cost only 80 cents.
Because it’s healthy
Tap water contains the right amount of minerals for a healthy balance in your body.
Because it’s always accessible
It does not need to be brought from a distance and is always at hand, at home or at the distribution points to be found around the city. In Milan it is provided by 47 self-service water distributors (case dell’acqua) and 586 drinking fountains vedovelle.