Activists Submit 280,000+ Comments to US Forest Service Demanding An End to Nestlé Water Bottling in the San Bernardino National Forest

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May 03, 2016

*Activists Submit 280,000+ Comments to the US Forest Service Demanding an End to Nestle Water Bottling in the San Bernardino National Forest*

*Groups Call for Thorough and Unbiased Environmental Impact Statement Before Considering Nestle Request for New Water Bottling Permit*

CALIFORNIA -- More than 280,000 members of the California-based Courage Campaign Institute, The Story of Stuff Project, Food and Water Watch, Care2, CREDO, SumOfUs and the Daily Kos have submitted comments to the US Forest Service requesting the Forest Service not approve Nestle's new permit for water bottling in the San Bernardino National Forest.

The coalition of groups submitted their public comments to Jody Noiron, the San Bernardino Forest Supervisor and Thomas Tidwell, US Forest Service Chief of Staff with a letter reading:

"The undersigned 280,355 members of The Story of Stuff Project, Courage Campaign, Food and Water Watch, Care2, CREDO, SumofUs, Daily Kos request that you take expedient action to turn off the spigot on Nestle's unregulated water bottling in the San Bernardino National Forest, and ensure that a thorough and unbiased Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is completed before considering any request by Nestle to further access our public forest.

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"Nestle has a track record demonstrating a frequent disregard for the wellbeing of communities and ecosystems worldwide. We feel that by allowing Nestle to continue operating unregulated the Forest Service is disregarding its legal obligation to manage public resources like water, plants and animals sustainably -- to hold it in trust for future generations. Now that the water flow in San Bernardino's Strawberry Creek is at a mere 10% of its 90 year historic average, further action should not be delayed. Please demonstrate that the Forest Service takes public forest protection seriously by shutting off Nestle's operations today."

Last year, the Story of Stuff Project, the California-based Courage Campaign Institute, and the Center for Biological Diversity filed a lawsuit against the US Forest Service for allowing Nestle to continue to bottle millions of gallons of water from the San Bernardino National Forest with a permit that expired 27 years ago. The lawsuit specifically challenged Nestle's four-mile pipeline that siphons water from San Bernardino National Forest's Strawberry Creek to bottling operations in Ontario, California.

Following the lawsuit, the US Forest Service announced plans to review and renew Nestle's permit for another five years.