For Immediate Release
PepsiCo Bluewashing Strikes Again
oint statement of Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director of Food & Water Watch and Maude Barlow, Chairperson of the Council of Canadians
WASHINGTON - “The attention received by the recent inauguration of five
WaterHealth Centers in Ghana by PepsiCo and the Safe Water Network is
best viewed in the larger context of PepsiCo’s overall environmental
and water footprint. This is yet another attempt by a large corporation
to “bluewash” their reputation. PepsiCo has faced extensive and
well-deserved criticism around the world for depleting groundwater
resources, undertaking unsustainable inter-basin water transfers and
polluting water sources, all of which leave these local communities and
ecosystems suffering from increased water scarcity and degraded water
quality. Clearly PepsiCo makes unconscionable profits through the abuse
and access to water in many parts of the world, and a small project in
Ghana does not alter this terrible reality.
“We hope that these five water centers do secure the human right to
water for those few who benefit from the little over one million dollar
a year contribution that PepsiCo is making to this three year project.
We also think that all those communities where PepsiCo is doing harm
also deserve their human right to water to be respected and that the
environmental harm PepsiCo is inflicting on these ecosystems is not
acceptable, nor mitigated by this initiative.
“We also call upon PepsiCo and the media that reported favorably on
this initiative to commit to proper follow-up to ensure that the
promises Pepsi has made to these communities are fulfilled. It is even
more important that those places where people are fighting against the
impacts that PepsiCo is having in their communities also receive a
chance to get their stories told and to be able to challenge this
corporation’s questionable commitment to sustainable water and water as
a human right.
“A few years ago the people of Pudussery, India were able to get
local authorities to revoke PepsiCo’s water license because of the
company’s impacts on their groundwater. Others continue to fight, and
these are the communities where PepsiCo can dramatically improve the
quality of life for people by immediately stopping its unsustainable
environmental practices. We call for people around the world to stand
up for these communities and for water justice – and against these
large multinational corporations wielding such immense power. Water is
Food & Water Watch is a nonprofit consumer organization that works to ensure clean water and safe food. We challenge the corporate control and abuse of our food and water resources by empowering people to take action and by transforming the public consciousness about what we eat and drink.