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Group pushes for Northwest to ban bottled water

At events in Olympia and Salem Tuesday, an activist group called on Washington and Oregon's governors to stop spending taxpayer dollars on bottled water.

Organizer Sriram Madhusoodanan, with the group Corporate Accountability International, says those little plastic bottles, sometimes available at public meetings and events, create unnecessary waste and undermine confidence in the quality of public water supplies.

“I think that this issue is on their radar. They’re aware of it. But we’d really like them to make a commitment and follow through with limiting all expenditures on bottled water, especially in the midst of a budget crisis," says Madhusoodanan.

There was no immediate response from either governor.

Still, the activists were in a good mood because Vermont’s governor announced a commitment to move his state off bottled water. According to Madhusoodanan, Vermont is the fourth state to impose a bottled water ban.

Correspondent Tom Banse is an Olympia-based reporter with more than three decades of experience covering Washington and Oregon state government, public policy, business and breaking news stories. Most of his career was spent with public radio's Northwest News Network, but now in semi-retirement his work is appearing on other outlets.