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Japan's first free water refill app, MyMizu beta version, now available for download

14 Comments

Japan’s first free water refill app, MyMizu (beta version), has been publicly launched. MyMizu aims to reduce PET bottle consumption and build a movement for environmental sustainability across Japan.

The smartphone app connects its users to 8,000+ free refill stations nationwide, including public water sources (e.g. water fountains) and partner businesses (cafes, restaurants, co-working spaces, hotels and shops), enabling people to refill instead of buying bottled water.

Japan is the second largest producer of PET bottles in the world. Every year, over 22 billion are produced in Japan; enough to circulate the Earth 120 times. While Japan’s recycling technology and infrastructure are advanced, approximately 2.6 billion bottles are incinerated, sent to landfill, or simply lost to waterways and the oceans annually.

Through the app, users can:

i) Access 8,000+ points across Japan to refill their bottles

ii) Discover new places (cafes, restaurants, hotels, etc)

iii) Reduce consumption of single-use plastic bottles

iv) Upload their own refill spots

With the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics approaching, the world’s eyes are on Japan: MyMizu provides an unparalleled opportunity for government and business partners to show that Japan is serious about sustainability. MyMizu launched its beta version publicly to coincide with the opening of the Rugby World Cup and the Global Climate Strike (a global demonstration for urgent action for the environment). An expected 1.8 million spectators, including up to 600,000 overseas visitors that come to watch the RWC can stay hydrated without the need for single-use plastic bottles, and participate in a global effort towards climate action.

MyMizu gives partner businesses a free opportunity to increase foot traffic, enhance their branding, and play their part in making their local area more sustainable and liveable – one bottle at a time.

The MyMizu app is internationally available for download on iOS. Visit mymizu.co to find out more about its mission, how to download the app, and how to register a new refill station.

MyMizu is borne out of Social Innovation Japan, a registered non-profit organization with a mission to activate greater social innovation in and out of Japan.

© Japan Today

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

14 Comments
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"Free Water"..... ...... ...... Hmm, makes one think about the state of the world!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I am curious. Are the water just tap water or filtered or else? By the way is tap water in Japan safe for drinking? Do Japanese usually boil the water before drinking? Here in Australia, many drink straight from the tap. I am one of them, too. However, my wife insist boiling the water first. My younger brother in Hong Kong only drinks bottled water.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Pity its only iOS. Cheapskates who drink water use Android, you know! ;)

Drinks a huge seller for convenience stores, so this can reduce lots of trash.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

By the way is tap water in Japan safe for drinking? Do Japanese usually boil the water before drinking?

All the advice is that the tap water in Japan is safe for drinking, even for visitors like us. I always drink it, and I've never had any problems. It's just as safe as it is in Australia, where your wife really doesn't need to be boiling the water first, unless you live in some drought-affected area where you've been advised otherwise.

I think this is a good initiative. Single-use plastic bags were an easy target, but this is asking a bit more of people, especially younger people who seem to think that if they don't have a PET bottle of water on hand at all times they're at risk of sudden death through dehydration.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

If an Android app is beyond them, can't they just make an overlay for Google Maps? Or put an open source map on their website?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@kohakuebisu maybe ads in the app, ease of use

They should be promoting tap water, as filters, pumps, manufacture of water dispenser just adds carbon footprint.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If water were priced according to its actual value, its value would be appreciated. As for PET bottles, they should have been outlawed a decade ago. Get a 500ml aluminiun flask instead.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Ok but all the local stores have water filling stations and can even buy empty bottles?

We use tap water but we also buy bottle water because it tastes good but every home needs to keep several boxes of bottled water for disasters. Look at the recent story in Chiba.

The PET bottles are taken to a recycling point.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If I'm in an unfamiliar area, I usually open up Google maps and look for the nearest park. Probably about 8 times out of 10 it has a water fountain.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yoshisan,

Don't worry; the tap water in Japan is very good and indeed tastes better than a lot of bottled water. The whole bottled water thing began in the States with an author who was plugging his own brand and later went to jail for fraud. Much of the bottled water there is less pure than tap water except, of course, in places like Flint, Michigan.

There's a lot of money being made in the bottled water industry, much of it from false or misleading claims of nonexistent health benefits and also of health dangers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I have just read the article again and I don't get: any water tap is a "refill station." I've been refilling for years and have never found myself in a place in Japan, rural or urban, in which refilling was even slightly inconvenient.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I got the app today, and I have to say it's nice and simple. There are few locations near where I live, but users are able to add their own places that aren't yet listed. The problem is that as others have mentioned, you can fill up a bottle at almost any conbini, gas station so it's a solution that doesn't really have a problem to feed it.

I might add a couple of natural springs that I know of in the mountains to help hikers.

Don't worry; the tap water in Japan is very good and indeed tastes better than a lot of bottled water.

Yeah, it is good! And bloody cheap. I pay less than 500 yen a month for my water, which is just absurdly good value. Some of my chums in Tokyo won't drink the tapwater though.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You can get free water in a conbini? Out of their kitchen tap and not the toilet one?

I wish hiking maps would label springs better. I make a mental note of anywhere with running water if I'm hiking or on my bike.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You can get free water in a conbini?

They are always happy to fill my bottles from their tap, and they dont mind me filling up my tea flask from the hot water pot. They usually have an outside tap around the back too, although it often has a hose attached. Same water supply though.

Family Mart staff have always been the most accomodating, Lawson the least.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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