Our water bills include a $30/month connection fee for tap water, a $30/month connection fee for reclaimed water (lawn and yard), $15/month for sewer, and a tiered water system that puts you in the $250+/month (total) range to water a relatively standard size lot plus provide water for a family of 3.
If our HOA didn't prohibit it, I'd drill a well.
This could certainly benefit from a heavier tax, considering their 91.4B in revenue
Look, I am not defending these people, but to have a real conversation about this topic we have to at least get the facts right.
The law is outdated. It treats water the same as air. If you can get it on your property it is essentially yours. They're buying land, putting in a well-head, getting a cheap permit, and taking it straight out of the groundwater, just like a utility would.
The problem, as I said, is that the law is outdated. But if it was updated we also need to have a real discussion about farm/agriculture usage of water and what they pay/how it is distributed.
By the way in, 2017, 41% of South Florida's Water District's surface & groundwater went to agriculture (1,076 million gallons). Another 41% went to the public utility (1,084 million gallons). Only 4% to industrial/commercial (116 million gallons). But yet we're talking about the 4%, not the 41%. Why is that?
Don't get me wrong, I think bottled water is largely a huge waste (though it does have some uses as well, I don't think the whole industry should disappear). I just don't think this argument (that Nestle gets "free water") is compelling. These deals aren't comparable to tap water pricing, they're probably more comparable to agricultural use, and Nestle's usage is likely a rounding error in comparison (as pointed out by someone elsewhere in this thread).
 There is no distinction between potable water that is ingested as opposed to used for showering and washing dishes, though.
Watering your lawn is likely $100+ of your bill, green lawns are expensive!
There's a big chunk of the problem.
We really need to start pushing back against "traditional" lawns. In a lot of places you're not just socially but legally required to maintain a completely unsuitable breed of grass in a condition that requires enormous amounts of both labor and water. America spends more water growing lawns than it does on wheat and corn. http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2014/03/grass-lawns-...
I wonder if they use more water filling the bottles or landscaping around the bottling plant.
This has virtually no impact on the aquifer:
> According to the United States Geological Survey, total withdrawals from the Floridan aquifer system in 2000 were ranked 5th highest of all principal aquifers in the Nation at 3,640 million gallons per day (Mgal/d)
It’s also not only a FL problem. Nestle has similar contracts with other states too.
That’s similar to saying farms should pay the state for using soil.
If they bought the land and proportionately drew water, then, okay. They’d pay taxes on the land asf.
Edit: It's 1Mg/day not 100Mg/day. Changed above.
It is still a larger portion from just that section of the aquifer near the Sante Fe river. Exactly how much I do not know. Bottling water is a contentious issue and I'm not entirely certain how to feel about it. Sure it can be beneficial for providing water to areas without any safe supply. It just rubs me the wrong way that Nestle doesn't pay any money for it so it isn't exactly a "utility" cost for those people.
Nobody seems to ever worry about the production of beer, wine or soda which requires an order of magnitude more fresh water per unit sold.
In fact, using this website even requires the use of water. According to the department of energy, data centres in the US will use a 174 billion gallons of water next year.
That is about 500 gallons of water per year, for every man woman and child in the US.
Does bottled water actually get exported/shipped long distances?
Have you ever seen Fiji water?
Wouldn't those ships require ballast anyways? It's a stability issue to be completely empty with such large displacement shipping vessels.
It makes it really easy for Nestle to take advantage of laws written for farmers 150 years ago.
We're slowly changing the rules about water so that we don't destroy California farming but still have water left in 50 years.
I hadn't kept up with the story since first hearing about it from locals running a petition - Interestingly there's a peer into the negotiation tactics due to an email slip:
Crystal was working on this for a while - they were bringing in fiber optic lines into Randle months beforehand, seemed to be on the mayor's good side. The interesting thing is wondering how it riled up people that I think are right-of-center non-environmental types. I remember hearing lines akin to 'a Japanese company is coming into our town' (Crystal Geyser is "is a wholly owned subsidiary of Japanese pharmaceutical company, Otsuka Holdings" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crystal_Geyser_Water_Company).
If almond growers want to use a ton of water to grow almonds, fine. At least we get almonds, almond milk, almond oil, etc from that water usage.
Bottled water gets us nothing because most places it's getting shipped to already have clean, potable water available. It's a waste of water first and foremost. (Obviously this argument is against wealthy first world nations drinking bottled water. It's totally reasonable to ship clean water to the 2nd and 3rd world).
It's doubly offensive when you factor in the fact that most bottled water is transported in single use plastic containers that don't fall apart. There weren't any empty water bottles washed up on lakes in the 90s. They're everywhere now.
It's triply offensive when you consider this water is transported using pollution emitting vehicles.
It's 3x the waste for 1x the benefit.
The final straw is that a company is getting rich doing this but not paying for the externalities they're creating.
One liter of bottled water requires 1 liter of water. One liter of almond milk requires 384. It is absurd that you justify almost 400x water consumption because "at least we get almonds".
I live in Florida. The amount of water I need is independent of bottles. If I drink a gallon of water from a pipe or bottle, I take a gallon of water out of the springs. If I drink a gallon of almond milk, I take 400 gallons from somewhere in California.
Your argument against plastic applies to almost all other things in grocery stores. The argument is specifically applied to water because everyone seems to have a personal grudge against Nestle.
Is bottled water wasteful? Yes. Should we dedicate more energy towards 400x wasteful activities in the same grocery store? Only if you want to be taken seriously.
Water is not being consumed or destroyed. There’s the same 384 liters left.
It's a water resource that's being exported at a potential unsafe rate compared to it being replenished. Which can have devastating impact on the environment. We already have sinkhole problems here in Florida.
Hell, look at water exported for LA and Las Vegas. Actually, just look up water exportation in general and see a lot of the problems it develops. It's not just an American thing.
I think most differences arise from the source of water that is present, and how that affects people's thinking of water usage. With rivers, water is seen as a resource that replenishes at a certain rate. Whether you use it for irrigation or let it flow into the sea, it is lost. Therefore, if water usage is restricted, the end result is a loss of fresh water. Maximal usage implies maximal societal benefit.
The Great Lakes are a rather unique situation, because they are the among the largest freshwater bodies in the world. So long as water being returned to the lakes is properly treated, you can use as much water as is desired without affecting the storage of water. So long as it stays within the Great Lakes watershed, rivers will quickly bring the water back to the lakes. The only way that the water will decrease substantially is if it is exported outside of the watershed entirely. Maximal societal benefit is gained by maximizing water usage within the watershed, and minimizing water usage outside.
It is these two mentalities that are in conflict, more than anything else. From the perspective of those using river water, the Great Lakes looks like hoarding, rather than appropriate management of a finite resource.
Storing the tap water itself is a lot harder since you need to keep it clean enough nothing grows in there for a while; bottled water is very convenient.
I thought that fresh water aquifers in Florida were predicted to get contaminated with seawater fairly soon.
That idea, in addition to being historically and contemporaneously wrong, manages to be dishonest, too; you, too, are pushing an agenda--it's just one comfortable with the status quo.
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