Yesterday, Nestlé Waters North America announced that it is partnering with Keeping America Beautiful (KAB) to do clean-ups at national parks as the government shutdown leaves parks overflowing with trash. Parks have reported that plastic bottles–which Nestlé sells its water in for a huge profit–are up to a fifth of their entire waste stream.
The bottled water industry has been blocking national parks from going bottled water free for nearly a decade. In fact, a Nestlé-backed lobby group, the International Bottled Water Association (IBWA), spent years lobbying Congress and the Department of Interior to rescind the National Park Service’s bottled-water free policy. And, in 2017, the Trump administration rescinded that policy — just weeks after Trump’s Deputy Secretary of Interior David Bernhardt, who has ties to Nestlé, was confirmed.
KAB’s corporate partners and board are comprised of corporations with hefty track records of environmental and human rights abuses, including PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Altria/Philip Morris USA, American Chemistry Council, McDonald’s, and Dow among others.
Please see below for Corporate Accountability’s water campaign director Lauren DeRusha Florez’s statement.
“Plastic water bottles are one of the largest sources of trash in our national parks, and Nestlé has been one of the primary obstacles to policies that could eliminate that very waste. Now, Nestlé is trying to present itself as the solution to the exact problem that it drives.
But, no amount of corporate social responsibility (CSR) will make people forget the stream of human rights and environmental abuses on Nestlé’s record: from undermining the human right to water to profiting off of deadly marketing of its infant formula. Bad news for Nestlé: shady CSR like this won’t clean up its filthy image.”