New York City has just ended its contract with Veolia. And it won’t be renewing it either! Veolia’s contract with the city was to manage its wastewater treatment plants. The company made huge profits by recommending dangerous measures to cut corners. There was a complete lack of public accountability in its practices. In fact, the company has a long history of chemical explosions, sewage spills, and water rate increases.
This is a victory for the anti-privatization movement with many local and advocacy groups coming together to push for the end of the contract. There was concern that renewing it would open the door to Veolia extending its business interests to privatization of New York’s water. In fact, the company promoted its New York contract to gain traction for its water privatization interests for the rest of the United States.
Veolia was the company responsible for testing the water in Flint, Michigan where they failed to find lead contamination because testing for lead fell outside the contract’s terms.
There is a petition from Corporate Accountability International to try to stop Veolia in the rest of the United States. The petition will be presented at the U.S. Conference of Mayors to demonstrate people’s support for public water. Please sign if you can.