|Grand Canyon national park: selling bottled water will be allowed there again. Photograph: Hugh Sitton/Getty Images|
Trump's decision to allow plastic bottle sales in national parks condemned
Reversal of ban shows ‘corporate agenda is king and people and environment are left behind’, say campaigners
The Trump administration’s decision to reverse a ban on the sale of plastic water bottles in some of America’s most famous national parks, including the Grand Canyon, shows “the corporate agenda is king and people and the environment are left behind”, campaigners have said.
Created by Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, the Cascade-Siskiyou monument protects Oregon’s extraordinary biodiversity, from butterflies to trout. But a Trump review threatens to open the landscape to the timber industry.
The comments come after the administration ended a policy that allowed parks to ban the sale of plastic bottled water in an effort to curb pollution.
That policy “was a win-win for everyone except the bottled water industry, which is only interested in its bottom line”, said Lauren DeRusha Florez, a campaign director for Corporate Accountability International, a group that campaigns against corporate abuses.
The change means national parks will no longer be allowed to ban plastic bottled water, after Trump administration officials ended a six-year-old policy put in place to curb pollution.
The National Park Service, responsible for America’s most celebrated wilderness areas, announced the change in a press release that closely echoed lobbyists’ arguments against the ban.
“It should be up to our visitors to decide how best to keep themselves and their families hydrated during a visit to a national park, particularly during hot summer visitation periods,” said the acting National Park Service director, Michael Reynolds. He said parks would continue to encourage people to use free bottle filling stations, “as appropriate”.
The same argument was used by the bottled water industry’s main mouthpiece, the International Bottled Water Association, last year. Members of the lobbying organization include representatives of bottled water giants such as Nestlé, which sells brands including Poland Springs, Perrier and San Pellegrino in North America.
Six years ago, the parks service encouraged America’s 417 federal parks to end bottled water sales where practical, arguing that the system needed to be “an exemplar of sustainability”. Parks that did ban bottled water only did so after installation of water bottle filling stations and a campaign to inform visitors where those filling stations were.
Since 2011, 23 of America’s most famous parks had ended bottled water sales. Those included the Grand Canyon and Zion national park, which together drew 10.2 million visitors in 2016. Last year, 331 million people visited America’s national parks.
Fonte: The Guardian