Welcome to the first episode of Talking Under Water: One water, one podcast. In this episode, your hosts...
The controversial water giant will provide 100,000 bottles of water per week for the next few months to the residents of Flint, Mich.
On May 10, Flint, Mich., Mayor Karen Weaver announced the donation of bottled water from Nestle Waters. The controversial bottled water company will provide three truckloads of water per week to the city’s Help Centers “for the next several months,” according to the statement.
Nestle’s donation will total 4,200 cases, or 100,000 bottles of water, per week, as reported by ABC News. The bottled water will be delivered directly to the Help Centers and distributed to the residents from there.
“I want to thank Nestle for their willingness to help the people of Flint,” Weaver said in a statement.
The announcement comes in light of recent controversy regarding Nestle’s bottled water pumping rights in rural Michigan. Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) recently approved a permit for Nestle Waters to increase the amount of water it withdraws from the White Pine Springs near Evart, Mich., from 250 gpm to 400. The decision met considerable backlash as residents argued the pumping harms local groundwater reserves and streams. Out of 81,862 comments filed by Michigan residents, only 75 of them were in favor of the permit.
Flint has been searching for alternate bottled water distribution since Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder ended the state funded bottled water distribution program early April. MDEQ found lead contamination levels to be below the federal standard of 15 ppb for several months, but the residents of Flint do not trust the water. Mayor Karen Weaver has argued that the state should continue to fund bottled water distribution until the city completes lead service line replacement, with an estimated end date of 2020.