Guestbook, questions and comments

Hi and thanks for stopping by the guestbook. Feel free to post information, questions or thoughts about The Ripple Effect and water issues that concern you. –Alex


  1. Baxter on June 14, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    Is it better to buy bottled water or use a Britta-type filter with tap water? We are in NYC.

  2. BIB on June 14, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    Loving the book Alex — it puts a whole new layer on the creeks, inlets and infrastructure I photograph around the edges of the city. Any chance of an NYC water tour?

    • Alex on June 21, 2011 at 10:52 pm

      Thanks BiB – once you start looking at the world through an aqueous lens, you DO see things differently

  3. David Small – Hydrologist on June 15, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    To the gentleman from New York asking about bottled water and filters. You don’t really need either. New York has among the safest and highest quality water supplies in the world. So does Boston.

    • Alex on June 21, 2011 at 10:44 pm

      Yes, we are very lucky in NYC — and Boston and SF — to have such good water we don’t need to filter it. Some people do, however, because they are worried about what sorts of pollutants might leach into the water from their old pipes. One reason the DEP is protecting the NYC watershed from hydrofracking (for now) is that if those sources are polluted, the city will have to build a multibillion-dollar treatment plant. Not good. So pay your water bill and support the DEP.

  4. Paulina Varshavskaya on June 16, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    Last night at the Seattle reading some people complained about laws preventing them from collecting rainwater on their rooftops. It seems that it’s a false rumor, at least according to these government sites: and

    • Alex on June 21, 2011 at 10:40 pm

      Thanks for posting, Paulina. As we discovered in our conversation that night in Seattle, this is an interesting issue that deserves more attention. Why AREN’T we collecting rainwater in a more intentional way?
      For now the fact remains that you can “harvest” your rainwater in Washington: <>

  5. Terry Spragg on June 16, 2011 at 4:20 pm

    Congratulations Alex. It’s been years since we last met. Check out our Wikipedia article at: Spragg Bag, and our YouTube video. Many stories to tell that relate to the “Ripple Effect” and our project. All the best, Terry

    • Alex on June 21, 2011 at 10:35 pm

      Hey Terry – thanks! Hope you enjoy the book. Good luck with the Spragg Bag.

  6. Alexandra Bonthron on October 9, 2011 at 6:38 am

    Alex – for 3 months next summer the skyline of NYC is being transformed for Water.
    Put “The Ripple Effect” into millions more hands around the world. Contact us, we’ll help.

  7. Libby Tucker on May 5, 2012 at 8:26 pm

    Hi Alex,
    I saw you at the Sunshine Theater last night in NYC. Congrats first of all on Last Call at the Oasis being inspired by your book! I am a tech entrepreneur but have a side passion for building awareness about plastic in the oceans. My blog is On it you’ll find a video called “Lifecycle of a Plastic Bottle”. I was surprised that in the movie there was a push for recycled water (great) in plastic bottles (not so great). The ripple effect of a plastic bottle is tremendous and has a huge impact on our ecosystem. Have you done any research on plastics in the ocean?
    Thanks, and congratulations again.

    • Alex on May 7, 2012 at 4:23 pm

      Thanks Libby – glad you saw the film, and hope you liked it – or at least are provoked by it.
      I can’t speak for the filmmakers, but my sense is they are trying to raise awareness of this issue, and point out that rather than toss bottles after a single use people can reuse them. It’s amazing how many people just don’t think about this. Obviously, it would be better if they didn’t buy bottled water in the first place. But given the power of the industry, any consciousness-raising will help. This country really needs a more aggressive, comprehensive recycling program.
      My research consists of sea kayaking far off the coast of Maine, and being disgusted by the number of bottled water bottles floating around and washing up on remote, uninhabited islands. It’s striking and infuriating. Kudos to you for bringing this issue to people’s attention!

  8. Libby Tucker on May 7, 2012 at 8:02 pm

    Alex, I did enjoy the film! I am on board with you that any consciousness-raising is important. Re. more aggressive recycling in the US, 90% of our waste ends up in oceans – we recycle only a mere 10% – so I couldn’t agree more. We are oblivious, as with drinking water, and unaware of the ripple effect. The key is mingling corporate profits and consumerism, and celebrity campaigns like the one from the film, to create change on a mass level. Kudos again for inspiring the film and for raising consciousness! I am promoting the film to everyone I know. If you’re ever interested in the Ripple Effect part II, plastic water bottles and our oceans 🙂 I’ll help!

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