Nestle blamed in Mich. water level battle

January 29, 2007

Environmental groups and residents in Michigan's Newaygo County are up in arms against Nestle Waters North America over lower water levels in the area.

Ever since the multinational food and beverage corporation moved to the area seven years ago, it has been blamed for drawing too much water from Michigan's Muskegon River watershed, the Detroit News reported.

"I'm worried that they will never stop. They'll just keep plunging holes in the ground," resident Valerie Duer said. "There's just no way to stop them. And all they are concerned about is the bottom line, the profits."

The company had already become the target of a Michigan Supreme Court action filed by Michigan Citizens for Water Conservation, yet has expanded its area endeavors as the case remains unresolved.

Once its expansion takes place, Nestle plans on withdrawing 216,000 gallons daily from the river to sell as bottled water through its Ice Mountain brand.

The corporation has defended its actions by alleging Michigan possesses significant underground water sources beyond area lakes and rivers, the newspaper said.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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