Forests in north Japan are being purchased by foreigners for as low as 60¢ a square meter, and the land purchased includes the groundwater beneath it. According to the article from Bloomberg News, Japan ranks 10th in the world in water resources, and has less regulation on foreigners purchasing land. The majority of the land purchases come from China-based companies and investors, some of whom plan to tap into the groundwater and export bottled water back to China. The article from Bloomberg Bussinessweek can be found here.
Concord, Massachusetts will ban bottled water (containers less than 1 liter) on January 1st. The International Bottled Water Association, which is run by bottled water companies, is fighting back. They are launching a petition for a public vote in March. Town Clerk Anita Tekle weighed in on the situation:
"'...outsiders hired by large corporations were trying to interfere with our local decisions...'"You can read more about the bottled water battle that is ensuing in Concord, article from Wicked Local Concord right here.