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Duly Quoted: Mayor Rob Ford

“…you can take Coke down to City Hall, you can take iced tea down to City Hall, everything else, fruit juice down to City Hall. But you can’t take water? And water is the healthiest form of liquid.”

—Mayor Ford is not a noted health enthusiast, but he has at least this much in common with the kale-eaters of the world: he loves water—bottled water. Well, it might be more accurate to say that he hates the fact that, in 2008, city council banned bottled-water sales on City property. Now, Ford is telling the media that he’d like to get that ban reversed. (This particular quote is from the Sun.) Does he remember April 2011, when his ally Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti (Ward 7, York West) tried to reverse part of the bottled-water ban and failed? Did the mayor learn nothing from his own attempt, earlier this year, to reverse the five-cent plastic-bag fee—a similar type of Miller-era environmental initiative—which only inadvertently spurred council into banning plastic shopping bags altogether? Is there more than one form of liquid? These are the questions.


  • Ashley Krista

    I support banning bottled water – as long as it’s accompanied by new water fountains and water bottle refill stations. If there’s no adequate source of water, it’s a little crazy that you can buy water+sugar in a bottle but not water.
    Not saying that is the case at city hall, but my general opinion isn’t so much anti-water-bottle as it is pro fountains.

  • Anonymous

    ive never understood that ban….. why is it that you can buy pop in bottles but not water? am i missing something here? shouldnt they have banned all bottles regardless of content?

    • vampchick21

      That seems the most logical to me actually.

    • Anonymous

      This confuses me too. Even the symbolism is terrible, like a bad parody of a soda-company lobbying campaign. “Ban water! Drink delicious Pepsi(TM) instead!”

    • Anonymous

      Water comes out of tap – for refillable bottles, you see – all over City Hall. Coke? fruit juice? not so much.

  • vampchick21

    While I agree with the sentiment, health-wise, I’m not sure he understands the ban, based on the words he’s using. I know my office removed bottled water from selection of free drinks avaliable, but installed a water filter in the kitchen, so water is still avaliable. I’m sure water is readily avaliable to drink at City Hall, and you are allowed to go down the street, buy a bottle of Evian from the store and bring it to City Hall to drink at your desk, you just can’t buy it at City Hall. (although I do wonder, is the production of bottled water worse for the environment than the production of a can of coke or iced tea, to use his examples? Wouldn’t the waste be the same or higher for an aluminum can?)

    • Anon

      Isn’t the difference between buying a coke and buying a bottle of water the fact that the exact same water (and in fact, better quality water) is available free at every tap and water fountain?
      Assuming the can of Coke and bottle of water have the same environmental footprint, the point is that one of them can be eliminated entirely just by not offering them for sale.

  • Anonymous

    Do they have water fountains at City Hall? Can people bring their own bottles to drink “the healthiest form of liquid”?

  • Anonymous

    I hope Council takes a page from the plastic bag vote: Repeal the water bottle ban, but then ban all single-use liquid containers on a whim.

    • Slippery Pete

      So they should ban cans but not bottles? Bottles can be reused.

      • Anonymous


    • Anonymous

      They’ll probably screw it up so only bagged water is allowed.

  • Walter Lis

    Just make sure that there are water fountains. Maybe next to the washrooms.

  • OgtheDim

    Surprised he didn’t mention Red Bull…

  • Anonymous

    There’s so much gravy at city hall, they’re watering the lawns and pouring it down the drains at Decco.

  • Patrick Cafferty

    It seems that Rob Ford wasn’t describing Coca Cola.