Join The Protest- Speak Out Against Nestle/Blue Triton’s Permit Violations

Greetings Fellow Activists!  

Nestle Waters/Blue Triton Brands (NW/BTB) Is presenting a summary of their 600 page annual report to the Chaffee County Commissioners at their meeting on Tuesday April 19th and we want you to be there to protest, informed and ready to speak!

3 Things To Know For This Meeting.  

1)  The “Annual Report” is a summary of NW/BTB’s operations this past year and acknowledges how they addressed permit conditions, water pumping in drought, where money was deposited etc.  They are obligated to submit and present on this each year, and the commissioners are to ensure they are in compliance with the terms of their permit, and not causing harm to the community or watershed. NW/BTB has a number of ongoing violations that have been ignored, and we need to demand accountability. 

2)    You have a say on this!  Your public comments on this nearly 600 page document  are due in writing by Friday April 15th.  Or can be presented in person at the meeting.  We would also like to request the comment period is extended after the meeting for two weeks.   Jen Swacina, of Unbottle Protect Chaffee County Water, has done a heroic job reviewing this report in short order, and has condensed and highlighted problematic sections into 21 pages for your use.  You can read over her notes by clicking here

3)    This is an in-person Board of County Commissioners meeting in Buena Vista, that will also be hosted on Zoom.   We will be protesting with signs out front, and attending the meeting, and need you there!  Please bring your signs, reusable water bottles, and organize a carpool with your friends to attend this important event.  The media is informed of this protest.  Please read below for more information on participating.  
Ready your pens,
Bring your signs,
and Prepare To Speak Out! 

Every year, Nestle/Blue Triton Brands is obligated to present their “Annual Report” to county commissioners on their operations, and despite the obvious detriment to our community, Nestle/BTB is not being held accountable for their failures to comply with the permit.  WHY?

If the commissioners were motivated to cancel the 1041 permit, based on years of failure to meet basic standards, THEY COULD.  Maybe it’s time ask why they haven’t.  Local citizens are kept under tight scrutiny for domestic well use, small backyard ponds, land use permits, etc.– so why is an operation draining the local watershed of drinking-quality water not held to the same standards?
  Has your pond, well, or other water right been highly scrutinized or drawn into question?  Come speak out at this meeting and insist that water use standards are applied consistently, and used to protect our valley’s watershed, not badger citizens.  

There is a clear difference between small amounts of water doing natural work in the ecosystem as a pond or irrigation resource and 62,465 gallons of water being entirely removed from our watershed every day, and sold for huge profit.  We question if the county receiving money from this corporation has perhaps impacted how standards are applied.   Furthermore, we would like to know why the money received from NW/BTB STILL HASN’T BEEN USED FOR THE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT PLAN that would set standards everyone in the county would follow in regards to land use and protection.   

When delivering your comments to the commissioners, it is important to focus on the ongoing permit violations, demand accountability, and question why these ongoing issues have been ignored.  Jen Swacina, of Unbottle Protect Chaffee County Water, has done a heroic job reviewing this nearly 600 page document in short order, and condensed and highlighted problematic sections into 21 pages for your use.  You can read over her notes by clicking here. 

  Attend in-person at the Buena Vista Community Center, 715 E Main St., Tues, April 19 (This is on the agenda for 1pm, we will be meeting out front with signs at 12:30pm)
Or, you can  join the online Zoom: https://zoom.us/j/109079543 
 Or, you can submit written comments before noon on Friday, April 15th to the county commissioners and to the county, (contacts listed below).

 Here are some compelling stats from the full annual report:

Water-hauling trucks get 6 miles per gallon, and in 2021, they made 2,725 trips between the Truck Loading Facility in Johnson Village and the Denver bottling plant. Only 3 of their truck drivers live within 25 miles of Chaffee County. Anecdotal evidence suggests these trucks are in excess, not following safe driving rules, and slowing traffic.

Water monitoring systems were noted as non-working, or interrupted by beaver activity, for yet another year, yielding inaccurate data.

The use of the term “spring water” was quietly replaced with “ground water” which appears to acknowledge the operation is draining an aquifer, not capturing flowing spring water, as previously argued  

Still no conservation easement, as promised in 2009, “concurrent with construction of the project.” 

Eight noxious weeds were identified on their property (in violation of grazing plan.)

 In 2021, they pumped on average 62,465 gallons of water per day in an area that was classified as being in extreme drought conditions

NW/BTB donated 42,099 single-use plastic bottles of water in 2021 to organizations in Colorado as a “benefit”, despite the fact they will pollute our landfills for decades to come, and polluted Colorado’s air in their transport and manufacture.  The corporation of course takes a tax write off for this “donation”. 

Greg Felt
Commissioner District #2
gfelt@chaffeecounty.orgKeith Baker
Commissioner District #1
kbaker@chaffeecounty.orgRusty Granzella
Commissioner District #3
rgranzella@chaffeecounty.org Brandy Coscarella
Administrative Assistant
Beth Helmke
Public Affairs Officer

CCCC Announces Community Service Projects for Earth Day

Spring clean your wardrobe BETTER this year. 

Recycle your denim and shoes!

Did you know that a  2021 report from the World Economic Forum identified the fashion industry, and its supply chain, as the planet’s third largest polluter (after food and construction)?  According to the EPA, 1 in 2 people are throwing their unwanted clothes straight in the trash. The result: 16 million tons of textile waste ends up in American landfills each year. 

CCCC is addressing this locally
                                   by hosting a jean and shoe recycling drive on Earth Day.

Our goal is to DIRECTLY keep hundreds of pounds of clothing waste out of our local landfill by collecting your past-wearable denim and shoes, and shipping them directly to product recyclers.  Cotton Denim is recycled into Blue Jean Insulation for homes, a great, non toxic alternative to fiberglass.  Shoes are recycled into mats for playground equipment, and eliminate the need for new rubber production for cushioned mats or other plastic materials at playgrounds. 

To promote this service, we will be collecting your too-destroyed-for-resale cotton jeans, jackets, or denim scraps, as well as unwearable shoes, and consolidating them for shipping.  Just bring your clean denim items (COTTON DENIM ONLY) and old shoes to the CCCC info booth at the Earth Day Festival 1-4 on Friday April 22nd and we will box and ship for you! 

We are also asking for donations of LARGE cardboard boxes in good condition for shipping.  Can’t make it to Earth Day?  No problem!  You can ship your stuff  any time by visiting this link here and printing out your free shipping labels:  https://www.zappos.com/about/zappos-for-good/recycle 

OR you can drop your recyclables at Box of Bubbles, who has offered to be an ongoing recycling location.  To schedule a drop off, contact Ken at 719-539-7443.  

Clean Up The Riverfront- Earth Day Trash Pick Up! 
10am-12pm  Riverside Park

What to bring:

– used plastic grocery bags
– refillable water bottle/coffee cup
 -sturdy shoes. 

(We have extra gloves and bags)

CCCC Volunteers are organizing a big trash clean up of the heavily trafficked areas of the Arkansas River near Riverside park, the morning of Earth Day! 

Join us at 10am at the CCCC info booth at Riverside Park  in Salida to organize pick up locations with our volunteer lead and grab a cup of coffee generously donated by Cafe Dawn!  (Thanks Phillip!) 

  We will pick up trash, clear areas of the bike/walk path of debris, and do our part to keep trash out of the river, and natural spaces.  The clean up will end by 12, leaving you plenty of time to enjoy the Earth Day Festival and Parade!  Hope to see you!

Call For Earth Day Helpers! Volunteer with the Climate Coalition for Earth Day!

Putting on such a large event is a lot of work for our small board and volunteers- we would love to have you join us! Helping set up, keep the park clean during the event, take down tables and canopies, and haul trash and recycling are all needed on Earth Day! There is a lot of behind the scenes organizing too… sending out social media posts, making thank you cards forour great sponsors, and following up with participants are all things we need help with.

We’re a fun group to work with, and your time is always greatly appreciated, even if it’s just an hour here or there. Please reach out to our community organizer at climatecolorado@gmail.com or fill out a contact form on this website and tell us you’d like to volunteer.


Announcing Earth Day Festival 2022!

You are invited to participate in our annual Earth Day Celebration on Friday April 22nd! !  

Our goal with Earth Day 2022 is two-fold:  First, through our Parade for the Species, we honor the beauty, joy, and inspiration we receive from our Mother Earth and celebrate playing, working, and creating on her behalf with a community parade down F Street. 

Secondly, we have a festival at Riverside Park with booths by local non-profits, green businesses, and organizations showcasing what they do and how the community can support them.  We’ll also have ongoing performances and talks at the bandshell, activities for kids, and are working on food trucks. Come meet the green non-profits and business in our valley, grab a bite to eat, and enjoy music and activities!

Earth Day is a time to come together in support of a better future, renew our efforts to work for better practices in our businesses and daily lives, and celebrate the joy of living on this beautiful planet.  Please join us!

Parade For The Species

Who:  YOU!  Your kids, your classroom, your family, or local organization! Anyone in the community who enjoys living on earth, dressing up in costumes, or just plain having a good time.  Come to have fun, and celebrate!

Where:  Meet in Salida at Alpine Park, look for our large Parade of the Species banner.  Parade route will frolic down F Street and end at Riverside Park

When: Gather at 11:30am in costume to participate and be placed in parade order. To watch the parade, bring chairs or find a spot to stand along F Street, parade begins at 12:00pm and ends by 1:00pm

What to do to prepare:  Create a costume, float, banner, or sign! Box of Bubbles will be hosting costume-making workshops leading up to the event- stay tuned.

 If you will be participating as a large group or organization,  Please fill out our participation form by clicking here

Participating in the
Earth Day Festival as an

Photo by Quang Nguyen Vinh on Pexels.com

Who:  Your organization, business, or group that works to protect local flora and fauna and natural resources, or provide our community with better options for green living, education, or community connectedness. 

When:  Set up in Riverside Park begins at 9:00am, with guests expected to arrive 12:00pm – 4:00pm.  Clean up and load out until 6:00pm  

Where:  Salida:  Riverside Park.  Event coordinator will reach out in coming weeks with details about booth locations, stage and amplification details, etc. after approving your application.  

What to do to prepare: 

  • Fill out our Organization Participation Form here.  
  • Come up with a fun way to share what your organization does, reach out to community members or volunteers, and share your story with the valley.  Your options are limitless, from a simple info table to holding mini workshops or demonstrations, educating the public on your mission, advertising an upcoming event, selling products, or having a group performance.  We encourage creativity, and are happy to help you come up with ideas!  
  • Please provide us with details in your application.  Consider if you will need use of park water, electricity, or more space than a standard 10×10 booth.  We have 3 hours of performance spots available, let us know if you would like to use the bandshell and our PA system.
  • Please note, the City of Salida requires a flat $25 fee for booths selling items for profit, and a state tax ID number to be provided to the Event Organizer. (Collecting donations as a non-profit is exempt).
  • Our organization’s work is fueled by volunteers and donations!  We always appreciate donations from vendors, consider giving percentage of sales to help us continue our important work