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The (Bottled Water) Battle of Concord The (Bottled Water) Battle of Concord

The (Bottled Water) Battle of Concord

by Andrew Price
June 26, 2010


In Concord, Massachusetts, an 82-year-old woman named Jean Hill, after hearing about the Pacific Garbage Patch, advocated for a flat-out ban on the sale of bottled water and guess what: The town's voters passed it.

What happens next is unclear though:

Mrs. Hill’s presentation compelled some 300 voters to support the ban. But days later, town officials said the ban appeared unenforceable. They have asked the state attorney general’s office for guidance.

“It’s our responsibility to carry out the wishes of town meeting, but we’re struggling a little with how to do that,” said Christopher Whelan, the town manager. “It’s still up in the air what will happen on Jan. 1.”

Mr. Lauria said the bottled water association would consider suing if the attorney general’s office signs off on the ban. “It’s a completely legal commodity, and to ban it runs afoul of interstate commerce considerations,” he said.

I'm not qualified to weigh in on the dangers of undermining interstate commerce law, but it's clear we would just have that much less immortal plastic litter in the world if the people of Concord have the final say on this.

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