Over 25,000 people have pledged to boycott Nestlé and bottled water, just two weeks after the Council of Canadians launched a national campaign. Canadians can pledge their commitment to the boycott at canadians.org/nestle.
“This response reflects the massive public outcry over Nestlé’s abuse of water and our government’s failure to take action,” says Maude Barlow, National Chairperson of the Council of Canadians. “Communities are trying to protect their water from a multi-billion dollar bottled water giant. People are loudly and clearly demanding a new water ethic. So far our governments are failing to address this urgent issue.”
This summer, while many parts of southern Ontario faced drought conditions, Nestlé continued to pump more than four million litres of groundwater every day from an aquifer near Guelph. Nestlé only pays Ontario $3.71 for every million litres of groundwater it extracts in the province, which it then ships out in hundreds of millions of single-use plastic bottles for sale all over North America.
Nestlé’s operations in British Columbia have also stirred up opposition from communities trying to protect their water. Despite the District of Hope experiencing Level 4 drought conditions last summer, Nestlé continues to extract 265 million litres from a well in the district, located in Sto:lo Territory. Nestlé pays $2.25 for every million litres it draws from the Kawkawa aquifer, which approximately 6,000 nearby residents in Hope rely on for their drinking water.
Rick Mercer’s rant tonight on the Rick Mercer Report is expected to focus on the growing campaign to challenge Nestlé and the bottled water industry.
The Boycott Nestlé campaign was announced at the launch of Maude Barlow’s new book in Guelph, part of a 14-city coast-to-coast tour. Copies of Boiling Point: Government Neglect, Corporate Abuse, and Canada’s Water Crisis (ECW Press, September 2016) are available for journalists upon request.