Plastic water bottles are one of the most common types of marine debris. File photo.

Hornby Island Co-op to stop selling plastic water bottles

In a bid to think globally but act locally, a Hornby Island grocery store will no longer be offering single-serve plastic water bottles.

“Once our current stock is depleted it will not be replenished,” said Hornby Island Co-op manager Julia Waddington.

Instead, the Hornby Island Co-op will offer one-litre metal drinking containers. The metal bottles will be free to refill using the Co-op’s in-store water system and will come with a $1 donation to the Hornby Island Water Stewardship Project.

The grocery store’s new policy follows in the footsteps of the Butchart Gardens in Victoria and the Vancouver Aquarium, which both banned such water bottles earlier this year.

Marine scientists estimate that eight million metric tonnes of plastic wind up as pollution in the oceans each year, with single-serve plastic water bottles being one of the most common kinds of marine debris.

The Hornby Island Co-op previously stopped offering plastic shopping bags over a decade ago. Waddington said banning plastic water bottles is a continuation of that policy.

“This seemed like a long overdue second step towards taking responsibility for our environment, both locally and globally,” she said.

According to Waddington, the decision to ban plastic water bottles came out of a recent membership engagement meeting on Oct. 22.

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