The Greenwood All Candidates meeting raised more questions than were answered about the negotiations the city is involved with to bring a water bottling plant to the community.
Mayor Kettle made the comment that the aquifer has, “seven trillion cubic litres refillable—so I don’t think we are going to run out of water.” It is somewhat worrisome that he didn’t cite a report or study that will give the residents some assurance this is a reliable number.
Given that the province currently has no law in place regulating groundwater in B.C. (though new legislation is in the works), how would Greenwood be compensated for the removal of this water from the groundwater table?
Here is a quote from a news article about District of Hope and the Nestle water plant they have there: “If you walk into Cooper’s Foods in downtown Hope— less than 5 kilometres away from Nestlé’s bottling plant—and buy a 1.5 litre bottle of Nestlé Pure Life water, it will set you back $1.19. That’s $1.19 more than Nestle paid to the government last year for withdrawing more than 265 million litres of fresh water from the well. “
What protection does the city have that this company won’t just set up their own bottling plant outside city limits where they might save taxes?
Have feasibility and environmental impact studies been done to ensure extraction of large volumes of water would not harm the aquifer?
What rights would local government retain to shut the tap off on water exports if they should prove detrimental? These questions weren’t asked at the all candidates forum last week.
Hopefully they have been asked at the council table in their in-camera meetings on the subject.