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Wildlife Officials Protest Nestle Water Bottling Plant

Tue, 03/30/2010 - 4:54am

CASCADE LOCKS, Ore. (AP) — Foes of a proposed Nestle Waters North America bottling plant in Cascade Locks, Ore., on Monday handed state wildlife officials petitions bearing 3,700 signatures of people against the project.

Nestle's plan is to tap a nearby spring that supplies an Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife hatchery. The agency is evaluating whether replacing the spring water with Cascade Locks well water would harm the hatchery's fish or a creek the hatchery feeds into.

Bottled water opponents have fought Nestle plants in California and elsewhere. The plant could bring 50 jobs to the small town of Cascade Locks, about 45 miles east of Portland.

Opponents call bottling Oregon spring water a waste of a prime resource.

Nestle's natural resource manager, Dave Palais, says his industry is clean and beneficial from a health standpoint. He contends that if bottled water wasn't available, people would turn to sodas and sugary beverages.

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