Paris may be lagging behind other cities in the environmentally-friendly stakes, but lately there has been a noticeable effort to remedy this. Their latest initiative involves rolling out sparkling water fountains all over the city, installing at least one in each of the city’s 20 arrondissements.
The French reportedly consume an average of 40 gallons of bottled water annually, and the new fountains are hoped to reduce plastic waste.
Aside from these important eco-friendly implications, city water authorities hope that the fountains will encourage Parisians to stay hydrated, as former Deputy Mayor or Paris Anne le Strat told 20 Minutes magazine back in 2010: “People often told me that they were ready to drink tap water if it was carbonated” and “Now they’ve got no excuse not to”. The fountains will be connected to the main water line, with a CO2 carbonator added in. Given the city’s ‘gourmand’ reputation, reactions to the fountains on social media have been both slightly mocking and rather excited.
It’s not the first time the Parisians have addressed an environmental issue in a somewhat flamboyant way; in February this year ‘eco friendly’ urinals were installed in notorious public-peeing spots outside the Gare de Lyon – coated in graffiti-resistant red paint, with an opening at the front and flowers growing out of the top, the boxes were planted in a bid to reduce street odour. The soaked wood chips, sawdust or straw would be transformed into compost to be used in gardens and parks. We can’t wait to see what environmentally-minded solution the ever-tasteful city comes up with next.