Temperatures climbed into the mid-90s the week Anna Mae Leonard held a five-day hunger strike across the street from City Hall in Cascade Locks, Oregon. From August 17 to 21 she allowed herself just a ceremonial sip of water taken from the spring she was fighting to save, one in the morning and one in the evening. Displaying a sign reading, "Honor Treaty 1855," she stared at the administration building across WaNaPa Street, hoping a city council member would see her.End of excerpt. Read more at link
"I want them to look at me suffer and think about how the fish will suffer without that cold spring water," Leonard said, according to The Oregonian.
Nestlé S.A., the world's largest multinational food conglomerate, based in Switzerland, wants to build a bottled-water plant in Cascade Locks, a former timber town on the Columbia River about 43 miles east of Portland. The plant would take 100 million gallons per year of pristine mountain water from the nearby Oxbow Springs and bottle it under the Arrowhead brand name.
Bark and Food, Water Watch and other environmental protection groups note that Oxbow Springs flows into the Columbia River. The cold mountain water holds more oxygen than the warmer river water and provides a thermal refuge that is necessary for spawning salmon to survive.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, 14 hydroelectric dams have been built on the Columbia, each one damaging the river by creating reservoirs that warm the surface temperature. Additionally, a hotter-than-normal summer this year combined with a lower-than-normal snow pack have heated the river to deadly levels, killing more than half this year's run of sockeye salmon, the The Oregonian reported.
Despite current drought conditions, Nestlé plans to take the cool Oxbow Springs water, load it into tanker trucks, transport it to the proposed bottling plant in Cascade Locks, put it into plastic single-use bottles, and ship it in still more trucks to cities like Portland, Seattle and Spokane. There, customers will pay what amounts to between $2.50 and $5 per gallon for water that cost Nestlé just over two-tenths of a cent per gallon.
I find this to be unconscionable. What Nestle is doing is the height of greed and disrespect. I have been writing about this for so long I find myself at times dumbstruck in reading how these water grabs continue without any repercussions to the companies doing it. There is absolutely no need for Nestle to be doing this. They would be willing to destroy a river, a population of salmon and to disrespect the sacred places of a culture during a drought no less to make a few extra dollars.
This is exactly what I was referring to in my entry yesterday on Divestiture and Abstention. It makes little sense in the end to pull your money if you continue to consume the product. Nestle wouldn't be one of the richest multi-national companies if people didn't consume the water they stole. Water is not a commodity. It is not a "product" Nestle created. They are stealing from nature in order to profit from it at the expense of it and other species.
How can that not enrage anyone who cares about this Earth and our water? Are we simply not to care about other species? Or the effect of this theft on the water source itself? I am now wary of humans finding water on Mars or anywhere else. All we will do is try to find a way to steal and waste it.
At a time when we as humans must be conserving and regaining our connection with the Earth why do we continue on the path to our own destruction? Is money really that important? Not to a salmon. Not to someone who knows the intrinsic worth of a clean flowing river undammed and free. Not to someone who knows that for all of the importance placed on money, you cannot drink it.
My respect to Anna Mae Leonard and all those who stand up to those who are blinded by the luster of a false God. It is time for their idol to fall.
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They are doing it in California too.
And here is the asshole himself. The people who run these companies are psychopaths. They do not operate anywhere near the level of the majority of us and yet, we keep supporting them with our $$$$$$. That is true insanity!