Make the most of waste by the Auckland Council

Become a hydration hero with Auckland Council

Published: Thursday 13 February 2020

Everyone knows that keeping our fluids up is important, especially on hot summer days spent hanging out at the beach or getting active outdoors.

The best drink choice on every front has got to be tap water – it’s refreshing, good for our bodies, easy to find, and better for the environment if we use a refillable drink bottle and avoid single-use plastic drink bottles.

Auckland Council, a Wai Auckland partner alongside Auckland Regional Public Health Service (ARPHS), Auckland Transport and Watercare, is campaigning for Aucklanders to stay healthy, avoid sugary drinks and cut back on plastic waste.

"We want to promote tap water as the healthy, free and environmentally-responsible first choice for people when they’re out enjoying our beautiful Auckland summer,” says Councillor Alf Filipaina, Chair of the Parks, Arts, Community and Events Committee.

Join the 'refillution'

Helping Aucklanders to get their fill, Refill NZ has teamed up with Wai Auckland to establish a network of more than 1,000 water stations across the region by mid-2021.

Stations are available right now, and all you need to do is take a reusable bottle to a Refill NZ station at over 50 council-run facilities around the region, including all pools and leisure centres and selected libraries, and fill up for free.

Those pounding the pavement aren’t forgotten either with water fountains scattered around the region along more than 85 AKL Paths.

“It’s easy to find a fountain to use as we power-walk around. Simply head to the AKL Paths website, select the area you want to walk in and check the drinking fountain box for the options,” says Cr Filipaina.

Making use of reusable drink bottles and refilling them with tap water will also help turn the tide on Aotearoa’s emerging plastic waste challenge – turning us into hydration heroes that protect our natural taonga (treasures) and waterways.   

Latest research from WasteMINZ shows that the most common plastic item in New Zealand is the single-use plastic drink bottle. Each year, every Kiwi household on average uses 188 of them, of which 36 end up in landfill because we put them in our rubbish bins instead of recycling them.

Wai Auckland also supports the #Feelsgoodtorefill campaign launched by the Ministry for the Environment. The campaign encourages people to use refillable water bottles and reduce the amount of single-use plastic drink bottles that are currently being sent to landfill.

“By choosing refilled water over other drinks we can reduce plastic waste and help protect nature, especially the oceans, from plastic pollution,” said Associate Minister for the Environment, Eugenie Sage.

Let’s join together this month to make a change for good. Encourage your whānau, your friends and your colleagues to join you in becoming a hydration hero and being part of the refillution.

Your body and our environment will thank you for it.