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Thursday, August 14, 2014

Bottled Water Companies Could Be Contributing to California's Drought

Posted By on Thu, Aug 14, 2014 at 11:55 AM

click to enlarge How many bottles of water will it take to drain the state? - SHUTTERSTOCK
  • Shutterstock
  • How many bottles of water will it take to drain the state?

Despite our state's dire need to conserve what little water is left, the rest of the country is quenching their thirst with loads of bottled water from California.

Don't start pointing fingers quite yet; there is no law that requires companies to spill the beans about their sourcing locations or how much water they're actually using, proving that ignorance is not always bliss.

A majority of America's bottled water comes from California, The Atlantic's City Lab reports, including big names like Crystal Geyser, Arrowhead, Aquafina, and Dasani

Whether they're bottling spring or treated tap water, Aquafina, Dasani, Arrowhead, and Crystal Geyser make a most of the homes in sundried California. - MOTHER JONES
  • Mother Jones
  • Whether they're bottling spring or treated tap water, Aquafina, Dasani, Arrowhead, and Crystal Geyser make a most of the homes in sundried California.

In the East Bay alone, Aquafina and Dasani are sucking up the water and dispersing it elsewhere. 


Companies aren't just targeting the state, nor does it have the best-tasting water — this is just where they've been for years. An Arrowhead representative tells City Lab that the 120-year-old company has sources that "have long, long been associated with the brand," including the original site in the San Bernardino Mountains.

There is also no regulation on groundwater in California meaning a finder's keepers type of deal is applied when companies drill for water.

Also not helping is America's sheer demand for bottled water — in 2012 alone, companies produced roughly 10 billion gallons of the stuff. It's also the country's number two largest "commercial beverage by volume," according to bottledwater.org.

Going straight to the bottles isn't the only route for water; it also makes its way into other drinks such as Coca-Cola's sodas. For every liter of a beverage produced in the state, 1.63 liters of water is used. So if you think that cracking open a Coke will help the water shortage, it won't. The company also owns Dasani.

With all of this in mind, how much longer can we go before the California drought becomes a national problem? Has anyone tried a rain dance yet?


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Tiffany Do

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