FIRST ON amNY | Council Member Bottcher set to propose pilot to retrofit fire hydrants into water fountains with new bill

A Manhattan lawmaker aims to launch a pilot program that would retrofit some fire hydrants around the city with drinking fountains through legislation he’s set to introduce Thursday, the details of which were shared exclusively with amNewYork Metro.

The lawmaker, City Council Member Erik Bottcher (D-Manhattan), will introduce the bill during the council’s bi-weekly Stated Meeting on Feb. 8.

Bottcher, in an interview, said the program is intended to provide people with alternatives to buying plastic bottled water. 

“New Yorkers need to break our addictions to single-use plastics,” Bottcher said.

The council member, citing studies, said that disposable plastic water bottles have a negative impact on the environment, as they are manufactured with fossil fuels like oil and often end up in landfills where they can take hundreds of years to decompose. Many plastic bottles also end up in the ocean, Bottcher said, with studies indicating that there is likely to be more plastic in the oceans than fish by 2050.