KIRKLEES Council has denied claims it spends nearly £100,000 a year on bottled water.
In a study, the BBC said Kirklees was splashing out £96,000 – the eighth highest figure in the country.
But a council spokesman said yesterday the claim was inaccurate.
He said: “What we are talking about is non-tap water that is drinkable – not water that comes in little bottles.
“We don’t do those to any extent, so we don’t spend £96,000 on bottled water.”
The spokesman explained that tap water could not be used all the time.
He said: “Many of our buildings are old and have outdated water supply pipes, and unsuitable access to tap water. For example, toilet sinks are sometimes the nearest water points available in some buildings.
“The cost of replacing old piping and providing proper facilities on every floor in all our office buildings for our thousands of staff would be excessive.
“Using other supplies of water is cheaper than modifying existing old pipework. We will endeavour when building new offices to use piped water from the mains supply.”
The spokesman added that Kirklees tries to minimise the environmental impact of its water use.
He said: “We mainly use a local company to supply water, using large containers and dispensing points, and we have a policy of recycling plastic cups provided.
“The large containers in which the water comes are also recycled.”
The BBC programme Panorama claimed on Monday that councils spend £5m a year on bottled water, with Hampshire County Council topping the list on £141,000.
Meanwhile, Yorkshire Water has encouraged people in the region to use tap water.
Spokeswoman Leanda Trethewey said: “Although bottled water has become more fashionable in recent years, tap water has many benefits to offer.
“We are confident that tap water is as good as anything which comes out of a bottle. Blind taste tests have proved that the average person does not know the difference.
“In Yorkshire we have some of the best quality water in the world, and it costs a fraction of bottled water, so why would you not choose to take advantage of this fantastic local resource?”
Ms Trethewey added that tap water generated 0.29 grammes of greenhouse gases per litre, compared to 100 grammes for a litre of bottled water.