Resources sustained

Having recently attended an inspiring event at which Poland Spring recognized the 72 community partners in Maine it helped with critically important contributions in 2009, I was astonished to read the nasty attack on the company from Howard Corwin of Center Lovell in the July 26 edition of the Sun Journal.

It just proves the old adage that no good deed goes unpunished, at least in Maine.

At the event I attended, Kim Jeffries, CEO of Nestle Waters North America, gave one of the best speeches I’ve ever heard, speaking from the heart about how much he values the company's employees; speaking with pride about how they have grown their business and become an international success; speaking with compassion about the company’s donations to people struck by disasters such as the BP oil spill; and speaking with commitment about their partnerships with good causes in our local communities.

The Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine is one of those good causes that is blessed by its partnership with Poland Spring — and we are proud to represent 50 Poland Spring employees who are members of our organization.

Sportsmen understand the concept of using renewable resources on a sustainable basis to offer economic opportunity to our friends and neighbors in Maine. Whether it's water or wind, trees, moose, deer or brook trout, our state has strong protections in place to assure that these resources are sustained for future generation.

I know Mr. Jeffries is proud of that. So am I.

George Smith, Mount Vernon, executive director

Sportsman's Alliance of Maine

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 's picture


fall under the "public trust." According to water expert, Jim Wilfong, "... ultimate ownership resides in the people of the state; and the government has a consequent duty to protect these for future generations. Groundwater, by contrast, has been relegated to the 'absolute dominion' rule." Under this archaic, common law rule, anyone (citizens of Maine, non-citizens, even foreign corporations) can pump all the water possible from the aquifer without regard for anyone else. Maine needs to put groundwater into the public trust for protection for our future generations.

 's picture

Veritas you are wrong!

veritas, my answer might be different if I was in western US, a good chunk of the west is located over a vast aquafer which goes on for miles covering several states thus an argument could be made by any of them however in MAINE our aquafers are local, mostly through fissures in granite bedrock under us, local and not interconnected (thus polluted rivers like the Androsgoccin have no affect on drinking water, but local contamination does). Replenished by natural effects such as rain and snow, but very next time - do YOUR homework before spouting on something you obviously have little geology background on.

PolandSpring Water/ Nestle

George, I understand what you are saying andIcan't off the top of my head remember the letter you refer to, but I do not think imposing a small tax/ bottle/gallon extracted, would cripple the company, and could provide necessary funding to/local+State govern ment, and cosequently all of Maine taxpayers in these tough times!

 's picture

Veritas? Do you have proof yet?

Have you found a source to validate your claim that the groundwater in Maine belongs to the State of Maine?

RONALD RIML's picture

The State of Maine Controls it

But unfortunately, Maine exercises an 'Absolute Dominion' Rule of water control, by which a landowner may intercept water in his well from that under land belonging to others - or to the state, even to the adverse effect upon others without incurring liability.

So it's not who owns the water - but who owns the well - the water can come from anywhere.

RONALD RIML's picture

They own the straw -

Not the drink

 's picture

Prove that the "people of the State of Maine"

own the water.

Give me a source for what you are saying.

Dave Healy's picture


What tax does everybody else in business in Maine pay that NWNA doesn't pay?They pay property taxes on the land that they have purchased.They are invested in protecting the sustainability of Aquifers on their properties,they are regulated by the State. I don't understand how people can believe the State of Maine Gov. isn't taxing any business or individual more than their fair share. Increasing taxes for whatever reason they can dream up in legislature is not going to solve Maines problems. The statement ,they don't pay for our water is ridiculous. You say your in business yourself, than you should know better than me that Maine isn't giving anybody a break unless the State is getting something out of it. I'm more concerned with trillions of dollars the current and former administations are sucking out us and our future generations than I am water NWNA is sucking out of the ground.

 's picture


How much do they pay for the water?

 's picture


How much water do you ship around the world?

RONALD RIML's picture

The People of the State of Maine...

Because God sure the hell didn't give it to Nestle Waters North America.

RONALD RIML's picture

The trees are static - sources of aquifers aren't....

Have you ever found a business you wouldn't subsidize there, Bob??

RONALD RIML's picture

The trees are static - the location of waterflow isn't

Thus 'thinkingman' you aren't...

 's picture

Not to mention the local jobs they provide

They give back alot, not just in taxes, but also in providing jobs. And what about the service they provide? With the state of our tap water here in Lewiston, I would say that bottled water is essential. Do you think the state could tax them and the retail prices won't go up? Of course not, the taxes would have to be passed on to Maine consumers by raisiing prices.

It seems to me that bottled water is better for the evironment anyway. When you turn on the tap to get a glass of water, you first have to let the water run down the drain so that the sediments will clear out, and to wait for the cooler water that is further down in the pipes. So we probably waste at least two glasses of water just to get one glass to drink. On the other hand, bottled water is 100% usable with no waste by the consumer at all. Also, bottled water is only used for drinking and not showers or cleaning, which both produce waste that isn't used, it just goes down the drain.

Dave Healy's picture

Tron cares

A few bucks for a bribe isn't enough for Tron.How much of a bribe does he need?Trons statements are completly false as usual.Tron is a liberal and so any business that is successful is stealing or cheating to be successful. I don't know how much NWNA pays in state, employee, fuel, property and all the other taxes, (neither does Tron) but I feel quite confident they are paying their fair share. If they were a struggling company and laying people off , making cuts in benefits and the purchase of raw materials. Than they would be in good standing with all the Trons out there. Poland Spring water is their # 1 brand. They are not going to run the state dry and move on. Besides the State of Maine monitoring the Aquifers, NWNA invests a great amont of capital in protecting the resourse as well.

 's picture

I believe they are giving

I believe they are giving back by paying taxes, employing many who would not have jobs if they weren't here and being good stewards of the land. Why is it that if a company is successful, it makes them bad??

RONALD RIML's picture

How about they should simply pay for what they sell...

Like the rest of us in business do.


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