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Date: 2024-02-21 Page is: DBtxt001.php txt00009911

Companies ... Nestle
Issue ... Water

Sign the petition ... Tell Nestle CEO Tim Brown: ... “End your irresponsible water profiteering in drought-stricken California. Stop blaming consumers and exercise some corporate responsibility in your water bottling practices.”

Burgess COMMENTARY

Peter Burgess

Outrageous! Nestle’s CEO on water profiteering in California: “If I could increase it, I would”

76% We've reached 57,177 of our goal of 75,000.

Sign the petition ... Tell Nestle CEO Tim Brown: ... “End your irresponsible water profiteering in drought-stricken California. Stop blaming consumers and exercise some corporate responsibility in your water bottling practices.”

Outrageous! Nestle’s CEO on water profiteering in California: “If I could increase it, I would” If you were the CEO of a company that was caught doing something really bad, would you admit that you wish you could do even more of it? Because that’s what Nestle’s CEO just did.

Recently, nearly 200,000 CREDO activists joined together to tell the U.S Forest Service to stop Nestle from pumping water out of a national forest in drought-stricken California. That helped put a spotlight on Nestle and launched a round of intense media scrutiny. But instead of deciding to do the right thing, as other companies like Starbucks1 have done in the face of the drought, Nestle’s CEO decided to dig in and double down. When questioned in a recent radio interview about whether they would consider halting their water extraction, Nestle CEO Tim Brown stated: “Absolutely not. In fact, if I could increase it, I would.”2

Apparently, Nestle’s CEO has spent so much time focusing on driving up Nestle’s profits at any cost that he’s apparently lost any sense of corporate responsibility when it comes to bottling water. So this time we need to up the pressure even more by sending a message directly to Nestle.

Tell Nestle CEO Tim Brown: Exercise some corporate responsibility and end your water profiteering in drought-stricken California.

Unfortunately, Brown’s out-of-touch comments didn’t end there. In the same interview, he went so far as to blame consumers for Nestle’s practices, at one point stating, “If I stop bottling water tomorrow, people would buy another brand of bottled water...It’s driven by consumer demand, it’s driven by an on-the-go society that needs to hydrate.” Apparently he’s never heard of a re-usable water bottle.

Perhaps it’s not a complete surprise to see Nestle respond in such a tone-deaf manner by passing the buck and shirking responsibility. After all, this is the same corporation whose CEO once famously challenged the human right to water. During that same year, Nestle fought a decision by the Ministry of the Environment in Ontario, Canada that would limit its water-taking in times of severe drought.3

Nestle won’t end its extreme and irresponsible profiteering without a fight. It’s time to ratchet up the spotlight on Nestle itself and show that we won’t stand by while its CEO tries to spin his way out of his company’s inexcusable water profiteering.

Tell Nestle CEO Tim Brown: Exercise some corporate responsibility and end your water profiteering in drought-stricken California.

Thank you for your activism.

'Starbucks moves Ethos water from California after droughtshaming' The Washington Post, May 12, 2015

'Nestlé Waters CEO isn't stopping bottling in California, says new tech will save millions of gallons' Southern California Public Radio, May 14, 2015 ... See text below

'Organizations Denounce Nestle’s New Human Rights Impact Assessment as a Public Relations Stunt,' Food & Water Watch, December 19, 2013.

CREDO Action is a publication of Working Assets | credomobile.com


Nestlé Waters CEO isn't stopping bottling in California, says new tech will save millions of gallons

by Matt Dangelantonio | AirTalk May 14 2015
Volunteer firefighter, Christian Avalos loads bottled water into the bed of a truck for resident Donna Johnson to distribute as water wells supplying hundreds of residents remain dry in the fourth year of worsening drought on February 11, 2015 in East Porterville, California.DAVID MCNEW/GETTY IMAGES Vector triangle white Listen to this story 24 MIN 7 SEC

'Absolutely not. In fact, if I could increase it, I would.'

This was the answer Nestlé Waters North America CEO Tim Brown gave when Jay Famiglietti, a hydrologist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, asked him whether he would ever consider moving his company's bottling operations out of California during an interview on Wednesday with Larry Mantle on AirTalk.

'If I stop bottling water tomorrow,' said Brown, 'people would buy another brand of bottled water. As the second largest bottler in the state, we’re filling a role many others aren’t filling. It’s driven by consumer demand, it’s driven by an on-the-go society that needs to hydrate. Frankly, we’re very happy [consumers] are doing it in a healthier way.'

As the Golden State wheezes its way through a historic drought, criticism for bottled water companies operating factories here has been harsh. Just over a week after a Mother Jones investigation, Starbucks announced that it would be moving bottling operations for its Ethos Water brand from California to Pennsylvania because of severe drought conditions. A day before the Mother Jones story broke, Brown wrote an op-ed in the San Bernardino Sun on why the bottled water industry isn't contributing to the drought.

On Tuesday, Nestlé said that it is investing $7 million on technology and upgrades that would turn its Modesto milk factory into a 'zero water' by extracting water from the milk production process and using it in factory operations.

'We have these cooling towers [for milk] that use water,' says Brown. 'Previously, that would have been fresh water that we would’ve drawn out of the municipal supply. Now, we can use our own water that had come previously from the milk. That water, normally, would’ve gone into the waste stream. Now it can be reused or recycled.'

Brown says Nestlé outfitted its factory in Jalisco, Mexico with the 'zero water' technology last year and doing so at the Modesto factory will save almost 63 million gallons of water annually. He added that they've found another 26 million gallons they could save a year at Nestlé USA plants in Bakersfield and Tulare.

'That's adaptation,' says Brown. 'Regardless of whether we were in the bottled water business or not, we would need to be doing things like this to operate in a water-scarce environment.'

Famiglietti, who teaches Earth system science at UC Irvine in addition to being NASA JPL's top water scientist, says Nestlé has a strong reputation when it comes to environmental stewardship. But he says bottling water still takes 30 to 50 percent more water than turning on the tap, and he's concerned companies like Nestlé or Starbucks might be using and bottling thousands of acre-feet of water in California.

Famiglietti warns that while it may not seem like much, it's more than a drop in the bucket.

'An acre-foot [nearly 326,000 gallons] is enough water to supply an entire family for a year. So, in this time when we’re being asked to flush our toilets less and less, we have to ask the question: Is this really an environmentally, ethically correct thing to be doing right now?'

Still, Nestlé’s Brown says being water-conscious extends far beyond the bottled water industry.

'Everybody in every facet of water in California has to find better design, better use, better ways to be more efficient. We have to look at design and how we touch water in a water scarce environment. There’s been 17 droughts in the last 48 years. We’re in this one, there will be more, and we all have to look at how water is going to move throughout the state.'

The upgrades to Nestlé's Modesto plant are expected to be finished by the end of 2016. Nestlé Waters North America has five bottled water facilities in the state of California, and its brands include Arrowhead, Pure Life, Poland Spring, and Deer Park.

Meanwhile, as the drought here in California trickles on, Famiglietti suggests that the greater problem lies not in the bottled water industry or even in the drought.

'I think that we also have, with the greater water crisis here that we face in California, a human behavior problem. We need to change our behavior with respect to water and our understanding of how much water we actually have available to us, not only in California, but around the country.'

Guests:

Jay Famiglietti, hydrologist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and a professor of Earth System Science at UC Irvine

Tim Brown, CEO of Nestlé Waters North America


Credo
June 6, 2015
The text being discussed is available at
http://act.credoaction.com/sign/Nestle_CEO
and
http://www.scpr.org/programs/airtalk/2015/05/13/42830/nestl-waters-ceo-isnt-stopping-bottling-in-califor/
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