America’s Water Supply: Scarcity Becoming Endemic
from The Huffington Post, 11/19/09
The Enviro-Pranksters The Yes Men were at it again with a recent trip to Boston, where, posing as Coca Cola representatives, they unveiled a new name and label for Dasani water, called “Deception.” The Yes Men, working with the Think Outside The Bottle Campaign of Corporate Accountability International are drawing attention to how bottled water is marketed as healthier, but its actually less regulated than city water and comes with serious environmental costs. Kristin Urquiza from the Think Outside The Bottle campaign discusses in the video that 40% of bottled water actually comes from the same sources as tap water…Click here to read the rest of this article and watch the video.
America’s Water Supply: Scarcity Becoming Endemic
from Circle of Blue Waternews, 10/12/09
Americans have good reason to be concerned about the future of the nation’s supply of clean fresh water, according to state and federal research and resource agencies.
The U.S. Drought Monitor, a weekly online report produced by the Department of Agriculture and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, notes in its latest assessment that one-third of the continental United States is suffering abnormally dry or drought conditions.
Drought conditions grip more than half of the West, with little change from the same time last year. The hardest-hit areas include California, in its third year of a statewide drought, and Arizona, which has been experiencing abnormally dry or drought conditions since August.Groundwater resources, which provide half of the country’s drinking water as well as irrigation for crops and water for industrial use, also are diminishing…Click here to read the rest of this article.
Every Story About Chemicals in Drinking Water Is a Gift to the Bottled Water Industry
from AlterNet.org, 8/26/09
The New York Times ran a front page story yesterday on atrazine in drinking water (part of its series on worsening water pollution) and the state of federal tap-water regulation of this super-common weed killer (not good). The chemical is worrisome because of its ubiquity, its links with birth defects and low birth weights, and because it may have effects at levels lower than those previously suspected. (U.C. Berkeley’s Dr. Tyrone Hayes, who correlated low-level atrazine exposure to deformities like extra legs in frogs, was absent from the Times story. You can read about his research in this article I did for Discover.)
The Times story reminds us that new chemicals appear faster than old ones are being tested, testing is often performed by manufacturers themselves, and mixture effects are difficult to sort out. The thing is, testing drinking water for every possible chemical of concern is extremely expensive,…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Sales of bottled water fall in U.S.
from the Portland Press Herald, 8/16/09
The recession has finally answered the question that centuries of philosophers could not: The glass is half-empty.
That’s because sales of bottled water have fallen for the first time in at least five years, assailed by wrathful environmentalists and budget-conscious consumers who have discovered that tap water is practically free.
Even Nestle, which has operations in Maine and is the country’s largest seller of bottled water, is beginning to feel a bit parched. On Wednesday, it reported that profits for the first half of the year dropped…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Despite federal protection, Great Lakes remain troubled waters
from the Detroit News, 8/6/09
If there’s one sure bipartisan thing in the environmental politics of Michigan, it’s this: The message to anyone outside the state is “hands off” the waters of the Great Lakes. No Michigan politician would dare advocate exporting Great Lakes water to thirsty Texans, for example. And no politician would issue a news release touting a proposal to sell a share of Lake Michigan to T. Boone Pickens.
And yet, unless action occurs soon in both Washington, D.C., and Lansing, we’ll end up with exactly those policies in place — with potentially monumental consequences for the Lakes and for Michigan…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Peter Gleick: Whose Water Is It? Water Rights in the Age of Scarcity
from the Circle of Blue/SF Gate, 8/4/09
Who “owns” what water? Or, if water belongs to the public, who has the right to use it?
This question is perhaps the thorniest question in the world of water. The answer is critical to California’s growing water crisis. It is critical to water in the western U.S. It is critical to the spat between Alabama, Georgia and Florida over the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint river system (say that three times fast). It is critical to Egypt and the nine other nations that share the Nile. It is critical to the Israelis, Palestinians, Jordanians, Lebanese and Syrians who share the tiny Jordan River. It is critical to disputes among users of water around the world.
And feelings run high. Just last week, Governor Sonny Purdue of Georgia said…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Yes, groundwater can exhibit signs of stress, even in regions which get plenty of rain.-soh2o
An ‘inconvenient truth’
from the Philadelphia Intelligencer, 8/3/09
Spring and summer rains are simply a Band-Aid on a growing water crisis in Upper Bucks.
“We’re not out of the woods by any means,” said Stephen Donovan, research scientist for the Bridgeton-Nockamixon-Tinicum Groundwater Committee.
A new report outlines increased stress on ground water around…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Massachusetts warns mothers of young children to avoid bisphenol A
from the Boston Globe, 8/3/09
Massachusetts public health officials today issued a strong warning to mothers of young children to avoid storing infant formula or breast milk in products containing bisphenol A and do their best to avoid the common chemical in other food and drink containers.
The warning comes after an exhaustive year-long review of the controversial chemical found in baby bottles…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Why Can’t the U.S. Guarantee the Most Basic of Human Rights — the Right to Clean Water?
from AlterNet.org, 7/30/09
The prime obstacle to guaranteeing a human right to water in international law has been the U.S. federal government, which also, by the way, opposes human rights to food and housing.
It is this somewhat surprising political dynamic that makes AB 1242 by California Assemblymen Ira Ruskin, D-Los Altos, so significant. The legislation, which establishes the right of every Californian to have clean water for basic human needs, passed a key state Senate committee in…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Finally, We May Get Funding for a Clean Water Trust Fund
from AlterNet.org, 7/28/09
Last week Representative Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) introduced H.R.3203, the Water Protection and Reinvestment Act. We know this as the Clean Water Trust Fund!
After years of work, we finally have bill that would establish a dedicated, firewalled source of funding for water infrastructure.
Here’s how the Fund would work: The Water Protection and Reinvestment Trust Fund would be established in the U.S. Treasury. Money from the Trust Fund would be distributed to the states forClick here to read the rest of the article.
Nestlé: Draining America Bottle By Bottle: How Nestlé Got Millions and Millions of Dollars From a $230 Permit
from DC Bureau, 7/20/09
Madison, Florida – It takes a smart and politically well-connected company like Nestlé to get a drought-stricken state like Florida to give it tens of millions of dollars worth of water to resell at enormous profits to its neighbors in states like the Carolinas and Georgia.
For Nestlé, finding new sources of fresh spring water and securing the right to pump the water requires political influence: the ability to secure support with high-level state and local officials. Nestlé, like other large corporations, believes residents see dollar signs when they hear a large corporation is coming to their town…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Congressional Hearing Scrutinizes Bottled Water
from NACS Online, 7/10/09
WASHINGTON – Members of the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee are asking the nation’s bottled water companies to submit information relating to product testing and sources.
On July 8, the Committee’s Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing, “Regulation of Bottled Water,” to examine current federal regulation of bottled water.
Following the hearing, Subcommittee Chairman Bart Stupak (D-MI) and Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (D-CA) sent letters to 13 bottled water companies requesting documents and information relating to the Subcommittee’s investigation into…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Bottled Water Regulation is Insufficient, Tap Water May Be Safer: House Investigates While GOP Rolls Eyes
from Buzzflash News, 7/8/09
When you think back on it, the commoditization of a resource that humans literally cannot live without water bottlehappened relatively easily. After a year or two of people laughing off the idea of bottled water, it was accepted as a fact of life, and now has become the way the majority of Americans get their H2O.
Many cite the health and safety benefits of water encased in plastic in defense of bottled water, but there is no guarantee that the product is any different from what comes out of one’s tap. That was the subject of Wednesday’s hearing of the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee.
Two reports being made public Wednesday spurred the subcommittee to…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Wake Up, Here is What a Real Water Crisis Looks Like
from the Circle of Blue Water News, 7/3/09
California is in the midst of an ugly debate about water–uglier than normal–because of a confluence of events, including a “hydrologic” drought caused by nature, a longer-term trend to restore some water back to failing ecosystems, and the gross mismanagement of the state’s water, which has been going on for a century, but is affecting us now more than ever…Click here to read the rest of the article.
But despite all of the rhetoric, news stories, name-calling, yelling, and screaming, Californians have very little clue about what a real water crisis looks like. It looks like what’s happening…
Bill Phillips’ 1949 Hydraulic Computer Uses Water to Predict the Economy
from Water Wired, 6/5/09
A colleague sent me a link to a blog post about this remarkable computer developed by Bill Phillips at the London School of Economics in 1949. It uses water flow to predict the flow of money in the economy…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Drinking from plastic bottles ‘increases exposure to gender-bending chemical’
from the Telegraph, 5/22/09
Scientists have demonstrated for the first time that polycarbonate containers release the chemical bisphenol A (BPA) into liquid stored in them.
BPA has been shown to interfere with reproductive development in animals and has been linked with cardiovascular disease and diabetes in humans.
New research by Harvard School of Public Health found that participants who drank for a week from polycarbonate bottles showed a two-thirds increase of BPA in their urine…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Industry group says bottled water may soon be off shelves in New York state
from the Daily Gazette of Schenectady, NY, 5/7/09
CAPITOL — Bottled water may disappear from store shelves across the state June 1 unless the expanded bottle bill law is changed, industry association officials said.
The Bigger Better Bottle Bill, signed into law in April, adds single-serving water bottles to the list of containers eligible for the nickle redemption. It also requires all New York deposit containers …Click here to read the rest of the article.
Too Many ‘Straws’ Sucking Water Out of the Colorado
from Alternet.org, 4/24/09
Without significantly cuts in demand, there won’t be enough water for those promised on the Lower Colorado River.
Tim Barnett is no stranger to water woes in the western US, particularly for states that draw on the Colorado River. He’s called its waters “the life’s blood of today’s modern Southwest society and economy” – an artery that serves roughly 27 million people in the US and Mexico and moistens 3 million acres of farmland…Click here to read the rest of the article.
What Happens When Nestle Enters a Rural Community (Statement from Terry Swier of Michigan)
from stopnestlewaters.org, 4/24/09
Terry Swier of Michigan has experienced Nestle Waters of North America’s predatory approach to rural communities firsthand; the Swiss multinational threatened a SLAPP suit (an intimidation lawsuit) aimed at those opposing them (eerily similar to their attempt to subpoena the private financial records of local opposed to their McCloud contract).
From the Corporate Accountability Web site comes this statement from Ms. Swier – which should be required reading by the citizens of any town on the receiving end of Nestle’s attentions:…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Wal-Mart seen cutting bottled water brand space
from Reuters.com, 4/17/09
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Wal-Mart Stores Inc may have cut the amount of shelf space it gives the bottled water brands of Coca-Cola Co and PepsiCo Inc, according to a prominent beverage analyst…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Out West, a new kind of water war
from the Los Angeles Times, 4/2/09
Nestle wants to tap an aquifer in Colorado for bottled water. Some residents are angered by the project. ‘They’re taking and not giving,’ one critic says.
Reporting from Denver — In rural Chaffee County, Colo., one of the world’s largest beverage companies has discovered water it deems fit for a bottle: clean and crisp, with the mountain spring flavor people are willing to … Click here to read the rest of the article.
A watery revolt in Boston Harbor
from the Boston Globe, 3/25/09
They came in colonial garb to Boston Harbor today not to dump tea – but to dump what they say is overpriced unnecessary water.
Noting that tap water in Boston and most Eastern Massachusetts’ communities that comes from the Quabbin Reservoir passes a slew of rigorous standards…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Bottled Waters Lose Their Effervescence
from BBC News, 2/13/09
The arid states of America’s south-west have been getting drier in recent years.
Since 2000, the Colorado River – which provides water for seven US states in the region – has carried less water than at any time in recorded history…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Bottled Waters Lose Their Effervescence
from Business Week, 1/30/09
The once red-hot bottled water industry has lost its sparkle. The $12-billion-a-year business has gotten whacked in the past year by the weak economy, an environmental backlash against plastic bottles, and competition from trendy canteens, often filled with tap water. That has left water marketers taking drastic steps to win back consumers, including a 3D Super Bowl ad and investments in the Fijian rain forest…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Toronto stood up to bottled water industry
from the Toronto Star, 12/11/08
Toronto’s decision last week to ban the sale and distribution of bottled water on city premises was a watershed moment for water justice advocates the world over. What was truly significant about Toronto’s action was not that it banned an environmentally destructive product, but that it included a commitment to ensuring access to tap water in all city facilities…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Katie Couric’s Notebook: Bottled Water
from CBS News, 12/3/08
Take a walk down the street or through the park and you’ll see them – people of all ages toting bottles of water. Last year, Americans drank nine billion gallons out of those little plastic bottles. Sure, it’s healthier than soda, but all that plastic is just as bad for the environment, creating an estimated 1.5 million tons of waste each year…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Drury to Ditch Plastic Water Bottles
from OzarksFirst.Com, 12/2/03
(SPRINGFIELD) — Drury University is among the many schools around the area working to have a greener campus…Click here to read the rest of the article.
FELTON FLOWS ON : A California Town Beats Back the Water Cartel
from World War 4 Report, 12/1/08
After a nearly six-year fight to acquire its water system from the German-owned corporate energy behemoth, RWE (Rheinisch-Westfälisches Elektrizitätswerk AG), residents of Felton, Calif., prevailed in regaining local control of their water…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Bottling Giant, Maine Residents Battle Over Water : From PBS Newshour with Jim Lehrer
click here to watch that report
New York City may close tap on bottled water
from the New York Daily News, 11/20/08
Let them drink tap.
City Councilmen Eric Gioia (D-Queens) and Simcha Felder (D-Brooklyn) will introduce a bill next week that would stop city agencies from buying bottled water and water coolers for workers at city agencies…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Water bottling permit to court
from the Gainesville Sun, 11/21/08
Gilchrist County Commissioners have been notified that their recent decision to reject plans for a water bottling plant is being challenged in court…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Nestle bottles, sells filtered Framingham tap water
from the Metro West Daily News, 11/11/08
FRAMINGHAM — The Framingham Technology Park off Rte. 9 does not evoke the idyllic and tranquil images often associated with ads promoting bottled drinking water….Click here to read the rest of the article.
How to Quench the World’s Thirst
from the Wall Street Journal, 11/8/08
Water has become a booming $500 billion industry, by some estimates. Economists and investors call it “the new oil” and “blue gold.”
Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens, who has bought water rights for a chunk of the Ogallala aquifer in Texas and owns more water than any individual in the United States, has said…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Is water the new oil?
from the Guardian, 11/2/08
It’s the world’s most precious commodity, yet many of us take it for granted. But that’s all about to change… Special report by Juliette Jowit…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Health scare of the week: Bottled water: Not so pure
from the Week, 10/31/08
A new set of tests on various brands of bottled water has revealed that they contain an alarming array of contaminants, including bacteria, fertilizer, industrial chemicals, drugs, and even radioactive elements…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Bottled water sales growth slow to trickle
from the Dallas Morning News, 10/31/08
Bottled water sales are expected to slow to a trickle this year, and producers are blaming everything from the parched economy to the kitchen sink…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Why Big Banks May End up Buying Your City’s Public Water System
from AlterNet.org, 10/31/08
In uncertain economic and environmental times, big banks and financial groups are buying public water systems as safe investments…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Coke sets targets for cuts in water, emissions
from Reuters.com, 10/30/08
Coca-Cola is the latest American brand working to improve its environmental credentials with a sweeping new program that pledges to improve water efficiency and reduce carbon dioxide emissions throughout its massive global system…Click here to read the rest of the article.
We mustn’t take water for granted
from the Guelph Mercury, 10/30/08
It’s widely been touted as the new oil over which the wars of the future will be fought.
That’s something that is hard for many Canadians to fathom — after all, our country is known around the world for its abundance of water…Click here to read the rest of the article.
First Nestle meeting was rocky
from the Mount Shasta Area Newspapers, 10/29/08
McCloud, Calif. – The first Nestle sponsored “public meeting” held in the McCloud High School gym last Wednesday evening quickly devolved into antagonism, with McCloud community members openly ridiculing the evening’s moderator…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Environment, economy weigh on bottled water sector
from Reuters.com, 10/29/08
ZURICH (Reuters) – The world’s top sellers of bottled water are trying to stop western consumers turning back to the tap by addressing environmental issues and trumpeting health benefits, while expanding aggressively in emerging markets…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Hold the bottled water — eco-friendly turn on the tap
from the Press-Enterprise & Scripps News, 10/28/08
One of the more popular stops at the University of Redlands food court in Redlands, Calif., these days is the dispenser for filtered tap water — free for customers with a reusable cup or bottle.
Those who forget their container can borrow one from the cafeteria, or buy a Nalgene sports bottle there for a discount.
More than 30 U.S. cities, including Los Angeles and San Francisco, now prohibit spending public money on bottled water, as does the…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Bottled Water Not so Pure
Is bottled water really less polluted than tap? Not according to one recent study
from NBC San Diego, 10/27/08
Tests on leading brands of bottled water turned up a variety of contaminants often found in tap water, according to a study released Wednesday by an environmental advocacy group.
The findings challenge the popular impression…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Bottled water getting the boot in Providence
Boston Globe, October 24, 2008
PROVIDENCE, R.I.—Providence Mayor David Cicilline says he’s signing an executive order prohibiting city departments from spending taxpayer money on bottled water. Click here to read the rest of the article.
Bottled Water Industry on the Defensive with Bogus Attack Campaign
from Alternet.org, 10/21/08
A group promoting the website EnjoyBottleWater.org is trying to handle the pressure put by consumer groups on bottled water companies by resorting to fear tactics. Their ploys are predictable and as easy to see through as their product.
A video by the group claims that politicians are trying to take away people’s rights to bottled water and shows headlines from newspapers where U.S. mayors have ended bottled water contracts for city buildings. The video juxtaposes…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Movement Against Bottled Water Gains Municipal Adherents
from the New York Times, 10/24/08
LONG ISLAND residents love to stay hydrated on the go — they consumed half a billion bottles of water in the past year. The evidence is everywhere: plastic bottles stuffed in treadmill cup holders at the gym, lined up neatly along the buffet table at office meetings and, even more often, tossed empty on the side of the road…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Maude Barlow: the Al Gore of H2O
Outspoken Canadian activist tells Erin Anderssen that she will bring the same doggedness she displayed in opposing NAFTA and globalization to her new post as the UN’s senior adviser on water issues.
Click here to continue reading the article. Article also can be found here.
Statement at Kennebunk Board of Trustees Meeting
by Judy Grant, Associated Campaigns Director
June 25 – Hello, my name is Judy Grant. I am the Associate Campaigns Director at Corporate Accountability International, a group that has, for 30 years, waged and won campaigns challenging irresponsible and dangerous corporate actions, working with people and organizations around the world.
Today, we are here in…Click here to continue reading the article.
Attorney General Slams Nestle’s Bottled Water Aspirations
from Alternet.org, 7/31/08
As many of you already know, we’ve been covering the situation in McCloud, California where food and beverage giant Nestle is trying to build a massive water bottling plant there — much to the dismay of the majority of local residents…Click here to read the rest of the article.
How Corporations Drain Our Aquifers for Profit
from NaturalNews.com, 6/11/08
A modern water war is raging in the tiny town of McCloud, California, snuggled at the base of Mt. Shasta. The enormous conglomerate, Nestlé, managed to extort a contract with the financially strapped town’s board members. They were so broke that they couldn’t afford an attorney to help guide them through the process. Click here to read the rest of the article.
The Backlash Against Bottled Water
from the The American Prospect, 5/27/08
The worldwide demand for water is doubling every 20 years. By 2025, two-thirds of all people may be facing severe water shortages. Concurrently, the bottled-water market has been exploding in North America. Today, close to one-fifth of the population relies exclusively on bottled water for its daily hydration. In the past decade, North American sales of bottled water tripled; in some regionsClick here to read the rest of the article.
The battle over bottled vs. tap water : Water as a social-justice cause
from the Christian Science Monitor, 1/17/08
Beyond campuses and city halls, the issues surrounding bottled water are also being taken up by groups dedicated to social justice. Sister Mary Ann Coyle sees the growing corporate control of water worldwide as the privatization of a basic human right and an increasingly scarce resource…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Stockton, California City Council Reverses Water Privatization It Passed Over Widespread Local Opposition
from Democracy Now!, 8/1/07
We end with a major victory for the opponents of water privatization. In 2003, the City Council of Stockton, California ignored overwhelming public opposition to approve a $600 million dollar, 20-year water privatization agreement. The deal gave a multinational consortium full control over the city’s water, sewage, and stormwater systems. But two weeks the council reversed the position and voted unanimously to resume control of its water utilities…Click here to read the rest of the article.
Cool, Clear, Water–For a Price
from The Nation, 12/11/02
Maude Barlow and Tony Clarke’s “Who Owns Water?” [Sept. 2/9] is a reminder that fresh water is rapidly becoming a commodity–and no longer an inalienable human right. Corporate interests, assisted by governments and free-trade agreements, are privatizing water distribution worldwide, … Click here to read the rest of the article.