Silverwood Lake. November 26, 2003 ��������� San Bernardino National Forest helicopter carrying a hay loadnewser

(NEWSER) – In the midst of a historic drought, Nestle bottled approximately 68,000 gallons of water from California's San Bernardino National Forest every day last year. It paid only an annual fee of $524 for the privilege. Oh, and its permit to do so expired 27 years ago.

The Desert Sun reports three environmental groups sued the US Forest Service Tuesday for allowing Nestle to continue drawing water without a valid permit. "It’s this whole privatization of public resources and profiteering off the stuff that all of us are supposed to own collectively,” says the executive director of the Courage Campaign Institute, one of the groups suing the Forest Service. The environmental groups don't believe Nestle's activities would be allowed if the permit—issued in 1978—had been forced to go through a modern environmental review process, according to the Los Angeles Times.

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