Water is a necessity of life. Water is essential for the survival of the entire planet, of all life forms, from the biggest whale to the smallest ant. Unfortunately, large corporations learned long ago that people will pay most anything for access to drinkable water. Companies such as Coca Cola or Nestle will take a town’s water, pollute their lakes, and then sell them their own water for $1.99, $2.45, or even $6.00. A substance that is so crucial for life should not be an industry controlled by those interested only in profit, yet somehow water has become just that.
The movie Flow: For Love of Water addresses some of the problems presented by the water industry. A fundamental problem with the production of bottled water is that often times, bottled water is nearly the same as tap water, containing the same chemicals and bacteria as water straight out of a faucet. In addition, water bottling facilities are hugely detrimental to the communities they invade. In Michigan, Nestle pumped over 450 gallons out of streams every minute, depleting citizens’ own water supply. In a small town in India, Coca Cola dirtied the water sources with toxic waste and then handed out that waste under the guise of it being fertilizer.
Dams and reservoirs stop the flow of organic matter, causing biotic and abiotic factors that usually live in rivers to come to a standstill. These factors begin to rot, producing methane gas. Not only that, but the construction of infrastructure over bodies of water displaces millions. In the twentieth century alone, between 40 and 80 million people were displaced for the building of dams.
The only solution to preventing large corporations from continuing to corrupt water sources and take advantage of a life sustaining substance is to enact local solutions. Local community protests are an example of a solution that works in the people’s best interest instead of the interest of a company interested only in profit. Today, water crises are happening all over the world. Flint, Michigan is currently fighting for clean water, and water is an ever growing industry. FLOW continues to advocate for clean water everywhere and empowers communities to protect their water. You can learn more about their cause here!
“Flow: For Love of Water.” IMDb, IMDb.com, 15 Dec. 2011, http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1149583/.