Monsanto, your friendly neighborhood producer of genetically modified organisms, is catching some heat for its water-hungry ways on the Hawaiian island of Molokai.
Molokai is where much of the research into the seed corn takes place, making Monsanto the largest employer on the island.
Putting people to work is awesome, but Monsanto’s massive farming operations gobble up a bunch land and suck down a lot of water. That’s the problem.
Monsanto wants to make money and maximize profits, so these research and farming facilities need to run full-steam ahead, which demands the lion share of the island’s water supplies.
So when a drought on Molokai dried up reservoirs, prompting the local irrigation company to demand water cutbacks of 20%, Monsanto petitioned for the right to take more water—threatening small farmers.
By law, two-thirds of Molokai’s water must go to homestead farmers, but companies like Monsanto drink up 84% of the irrigation system. That’s why local farmers are currently seeking legal action against Monsanto.
Image credit: ismaSan