Lawmakers Criticize Plan To Bottle Springwater In Oregon During Drought

Image courtesy of (Yusuf C)

Drought conditions in some parts of the country have people distressing jeans with ozone and painting their lawns green. Yet one industry keeps guzzling water and attracting the ire of the lawn-painting public: water-bottling operations.

In practical terms, not bottling water wouldn’t conserve very much of it, and also would mean that the same amount of water bottled somewhere else would have to be trucked in. “We’ve determined that bottled water serves a good use, especially in drought-stricken areas where people’s wells have gone dry,” a spokesperson for the state water control board told CNN. (warning: auto-play video)

The image of large corporations like Nestle and Starbucks bottling up water from agricultural regions in California affected by the drought and sending it out of the area reflects poorly on everyone involved. After a flurry of publicity against companies bottling water during a drought, Starbucks announced that it would bottle its Ethos brand of water in Pennsylvania.

Nestle, however, isn’t moving their bottling operation, but they would like to tap some nice springwater up in rural Oregon. After working out an arrangement with the state government, the plan could go forward. There’s one problem, though: the drought issues in other western states are affecting parts of Oregon, and even state legislators are concerned about the plan to bottle Oregon’s water when other parts of the state could use it, too.

Nestle Bottled-Water Plan Draws Fight in Drought-Stricken Oregon [Bloomberg News]

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