Julia Stephenson: The Green Goddess

A A A

Next month, Claridge's opens its much-heralded Water Bar, selling 30 brands from as far afield as the icebergs of Newfoundland, the volcanoes of New Zealand, and the virgin streams of Hawaii, to "discerning" customers. These waters are more expensive than good wine. One variety, 420 Volcanic, sourced through 200m of rock, costs £21 for 42cl, which works out at £50 a litre. Who will buy this stuff? Has the world gone mad?

Fortunately, sanity is at hand. The grand opening of the Water Bar coincides with a campaign to promote London's tap water. Inspired by the French water authority's successful campaign to promote Paris tap water by rechristening it Eau de Paris, Jenny Jones, the Green member of the London Assembly, hopes to do the same for good old eau de Londres by encouraging punters to ask for it in bars and restaurants.

"Mineral" water is often nothing of the kind. Sold as health-giving and rich in minerals, it's actually subject to less rigorous testing and purity standards than London tap water. And there are growing fears that plastic bottles may leach carcinogenic residues into the water.

There's also the devastating environmental impact of extracting water from the ground, packaging it and shipping or flying it round the world. Some 22 million tons of bottled water are transported each year, according to the Earth Policy Institute.

I reckon that the water that comes out of my wonderful reverse-osmosis filter unit beneath my sink – or Sloane Square Spring as I prefer to call it – is far superior. It's pure, it's cheap, and it avoids me having to lug crates of water to my flat.

Meanwhile, always looking for ways to increase my housekeeping (and inspired by an erstwhile chairman of a large water company who admitted: "It struck me ... that all you had to do was take the water out of the ground, then sell it for more than the price of wine, milk, or, for that matter, oil"), I've decided to jump on the bandwagon, so I contacted Claridge's and invited it to be the exclusive purveyor of Sloane Square Spring. Not only, I explained, does it taste delicious (entre nous, it doesn't taste of much, but then it is only water, for heaven's sake), but it is the world's first zero-carbon, zero-waste water. There will be no food miles incurred because I've lined up Polish Stephan and his team of tuk-tuk drivers to deliver, and packaging will be minimal as I can use the stacks of discarded bottles that get dumped in my bike basket.

Claridge's said that the "water menu" is quite full at the moment, but they'd get back to me. Huh.

Luckily, I've got a hot new lead. Connie is now dating a chef at the Aloha! Hilton in Honolulu who is very interested. If I buy my tuk-tuk boys some pedalos, we could have a deal.



www.freshwaterfilter.com

j.stephenson@independent.co.uk

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Parts Advisor

£16500 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the leading Mercedes-Ben...

Recruitment Genius: Software Developer

£27500 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Telemarketers / Sales - Home Based - OTE £23,500

£19500 - £23500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Experienced B2B Telemarketer wa...

Recruitment Genius: Showroom Assistant

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This global company are looking for two Showro...

Day In a Page

Fifa corruption: The 161-page dossier that exposes the organisation's dark heart

The 161-page dossier that exposes Fifa's dark heart

How did a group of corrupt officials turn football’s governing body into what was, in essence, a criminal enterprise? Chris Green and David Connett reveal all
Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

Art attack

Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
10 best wedding gift ideas

It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

Paul Scholes column

With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget fateful day in Belgium

Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget Heysel

Thirty years ago, 39 fans waiting to watch a European Cup final died as a result of a fatal cocktail of circumstances. Ian Herbert looks at how a club dealt with this tragedy
Amir Khan vs Chris Algieri: Khan’s audition for Floyd Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation, says Frank Warren

Khan’s audition for Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation

The Bolton fighter could be damned if he dazzles and damned if he doesn’t against Algieri, the man last seen being decked six times by Pacquiao, says Frank Warren
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor