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Over 30% of bottled water purified from tap: survey

TAIPEI -- Over 30 percent of the bottled water sold in Taipei is nothing more than tap water, according to the results of a recent survey conducted by city environmental protection authorities and released yesterday.

Twelve of 34 items tested by the Taipei City Government's Department of Environmental Protection were tap water purified by manufacturers prior to sale, the survey shows.

Ten of the products examined, or 29 percent, used mineral ground water, while eight used mineral water from artesian sources, according to the survey.

The remaining four products tested were seawater.

The department said the public should pay attention to the packaging information on the source of water they buy.

The department also urged consumption of tap water, saying that it is much cheaper than bottled water and is more environmentally friendly in its manufacturing process.

Bottled water is 2,500 times more expensive than tap water, the department noted, and generates on average 2,350 times more carbon dioxide during its manufacturing, delivery and recycling.

While many people believe bottled water is higher in quality than tap water, many products do not undergo proper quality control, in contrast with efforts by the Taipei Water Department to monitor tap water around the clock, the department noted.

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