Experts estimate that the average can of Coca-Cola contains nearly 12 ounces of potable but entirely inaccessible freshwater.
Corvallis, Oregon—Fueling humanitarian concerns over the vital resource's scarcity in many parts of the world, a report published Wednesday by researchers at Oregon State University has found that 68 percent of the earth's supply of potable water is trapped in Coca-Cola products.
According to top experts, the new report marks the first comprehensive attempt to measure the planet's freshwater reserves and determine exactly how much of it is currently locked inside sources such as Coke, Diet Coke, Caffeine-Free Coke, Dr. Pepper, Barq's root beer, and other Coca-Cola beverages, making it impossible to use as drinking water, or for bathing or cooking.
"Less than 3 percent of the earth's water is fresh, and of that, more than two-thirds exists in the form of Coke products incapable of serving any human need," said the report's lead author, Samer Ghosh, adding that the amount of freshwater that's not trapped in the brand's line of colas has been steadily declining for years. "There are vast, untapped quantities of potable water within these sodas, and they can be found in heavy concentrations throughout the world's grocery stores, vending machines, and home refrigerators. Unfortunately, though, we have no way of extracting it."
"Our own country has enough water in its Vanilla Coke Zero to fill Lake Michigan, but in its current state that water is useless to us," he added.