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E-M:/ FW: Press Release: S14 urgent action

Title: FW: Press Release: S14 urgent action
THANKS FOR YOUR ANTICIPATED PARTICIPATION..................sally neal...............

From: "Robert" <wobbly@waterissweet.org>
To: <stopperrier@yahoogroups.com>, <activist@utopianempire.com>
Subject: Press Release: S14 action
Date: Fri, Aug 30, 2002, 8:43 PM

For Immediate Release

ATT: News Editor
Contact: Robert Bartle 231-228-5489 or wobbly@waterissweet.org
Date: August 30, 2002

During the past month, significant media attention has been focused on water privatization and the
global water crisis.  Feature stories have appeared in The Nation, New York Times, National
Geographic and U.S. News and World Report.

The world is listening and Michigan water activists want to make sure they are heard.

Follwing a month of “street talking” and statewide direct actions related to the boycott of Ice Mountain
bottled water, a legal picket and rally is planned for Saturday, September 14, at the Stanwood location
of Nestle’s Ice Mountain water bottling facility.

Sweetwater Alliance organizers say they expect students, tribal members, environmentalists and
veteran anti-corporate globalization activists to participate in the day’s actions.  This is the first
gathering at the plant since late July when seven young individuals from the affinity group Water First!
chained themselves together in the shipping and receiving entrance to the plant.

The timing of the action reflects an awareness of water-related battles elsewhere in the world.  Last
year, the people of Cochabamba, Boliva used direct action to successfully force Bechtel Corporation
out of the country after privatization resulted in water rates being raised by as much as 200%.
According to Emily Pozner who recently gave a presentation in Traverse City about her work with water
activists in Bolivia, the case will be in World Bank court this September.  This case will be precedent
setting in terms of who has the power in these so-called trade disputes.

Like the  Bolivians, more and more Michigan citizens are becoming wary of the implications that
giving over access to the states groundwater to a foreign based corporation may have.

Monica Weinheimer, a community activist from Ann Arbor put it this way:
“ Who controls the water, the people or the corporations? This question will define whether we will live
in a democracy or under corporate dictatorship”

 “We go to the plant to raise awareness, disrupt business as usual for Ice Mountain and to stand in
solidarity with the peoples of the world struggling against other privatization schemes promoted by
the World Bank” said Brandon Everest, a teacher and social worker in the grand Traverse Area.

The day of action has been coordinated to follow on the heels of a talk to be given in nearby Mt.
Pleasant by internationally renown water scholar and activist, Maude Barlow.  Author of the
groundbreaking book “Blue Gold,” Barlow will come to Michigan directly follwing her appearance at
the World Summit on Sustainability in South Africa.

Terry Swier, president of Michigan Citizens for Water Conservation is anxious to demonstrate her
commitment to stopping the bottling of Great Lakes water.  “We are coming back to the plant to again
express our will for Ice Mountain to leave, especially considering the recent referendum votes in
Mecosta and Osceola counties that clearly sends the message to Ice Mountain that they are not
wanted here,”

Jessica Siewertsen was among the group of activists who earlier this summer rode over 300 miles
up the western side of the state, performing in a water related road show and educating the public on
the “Tsunami Tour.” She is now on the west coast where water scarcity is a costly and deeply serious
reality.  “When I went to San Francisco for work I thought our struggle against Ice Mountain would be
overshadowed by all the important issues out west, but I was wrong.  The first day I wore my “Water is
a Right” T shirt in the city, dozens of people came up to me to ask about how I got it—people out here
are very aware of the importance of the legal case, and the struggle to stop Ice Mountain.”