Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This


Thirsty DWP turns to Sparkletts

Stories like these are only possible with your help!
Your donation today keeps LAist independent, ready to meet the needs of our city, and paywall free. Thank you for your partnership, we can't do this without you.

We're as stunned as Laura Chick at the news that the LA DWP -- the tidy acronym for "Department of Water and Power" -- was buying bottled water for its offices, even as it spent a half-million dollars to promote how safe and delicious its tap water is to drink. We love it when the LA Times does local news like this.

Just how much water does $31,160 buy over two years? Records show it was both for in-office coolers and bottled water for employees in the field. If everything were equal, each month that would be about 60 5-gallon jugs in the office, and 110 cases of water. So in the field, that's 2,640 bottles of water a month. Hmm. That's a lot of water, but there are a lot of people who work for the DWP.

In 1995 Mayor Riordan -- whose home address is in Bel Air -- memo'd: "The city's tap water satisfies most needs, and bottled water should not be provided ordinarily at city expense." We agree. There's no reason why tax dollars should buy bottled water for the people who bring us the stuff from the tap. Besides, when you cool it off, it's delicious. The DWP can buy some nice coolers that use tap water to keep people in the office refreshed.

Support for LAist comes from

And for those in the field, why not have some fun? We suggest the DWP buy a bunch of vintage thermoses on eBay and let their big burly guys carry cool tap water in non-disposable bottles. Isn't everyone's day brightened by a little Snoopy?

We imagine at the DWP today, they're not in a vintage thermos mood. Instead they're probably wringing their hands and reciting Coleridge:

Water, water, every where,
Nor any drop to drink.