There's a water fight at national parks across the country.
The controversy centers on bottled water.
The National Park Service thought it would protect the environment and reduce trash by no longer selling disposable water bottles. Instead, it would let visitors refill reusable containers with drinking water.
“All the plastic stuff gets in the water, kills our wildlife, kills our ecosystems. It's bad for business,” said park visitor Mark Massman.
Parks are also getting rid of trash cans as a way to reduce waste.
About 20 parks, including the Grand Canyon and Mount Rushmore, have banned the sale of bottled water. But what bottling companies don't understand is why soda in plastic bottles is still available.
“They should have an option to drink bottle water, which again is the healthiest product on the shelf,” said Joe Doss, with the International Bottled Water Association.
Big Water lobbied Congress to get into the fight.
Earlier this month, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a plan that would forbid parks to spend money to ban bottled water.
“Banning bottle water defies common sense,” said Pennsylvania Rep. Keith Rothfus.
Critics said banning bottled water could force visitors to choose unhealthy, sugary options. The House plan is attached to a larger funding bill that lawmakers are still debating.
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.