Posted by 18 February 2020
Under a bill being considered by the Washington legislature, companies could not extract groundwater from the state and use it to produce bottled water.
Some environmental groups are pushing this bill to ban bottled water production in Washington and other states, saying that groundwater is an “essential public resource.” According to these groups, water should not be used for corporate profit, but be left for the use of the state’s residents. Opponents counter that bottled water plants create jobs. They also note that there is enough groundwater for use in bottled water plants as well as for local residents.
This legislation is the first nationwide that would enact such a ban. However, other states are considering laws that could restrict the use of groundwater for bottled water. Other legislation would impose new taxes on the industry.
There have also been local efforts to fight bottled water companies that want to open plants. These are the result of residents who fear the impact on their water supplies. The companies point out that they have a positive economic impact in areas and contend they are not depleting springs or ground water.
It is unclear if the Washington bill has enough support to pass the legislature. Governor Jay Inslee has not yet taken a position on the legislation.
Do you support banning companies from extracting groundwater for sale as bottled water?