Monday, February 04, 2019

Sucking us dryer

Cloud Ocean Water is sucking water out of Christchurch's aquifers for export, without paying a cent for it. Their existing water consents already pose a long-term threat to Christchurch's water supply. And now they're planning to take even more:

Cloud Ocean Water has bought land for a second bottling plant across the road from a factory it is developing on the site of a former wool scour.

The China-owned company could be eyeing up billions more litres of water from beneath Christchurch to bottle and sell overseas as part of a major expansion of its operations in Belfast.

At least eight bores with permission to take drinking water are on or next to the new site.

If it gains consent to use them, it could have access to another 7.5 billion litres of the city's water – five times what it can already take – for export each year.

If the consents are granted, Cloud Ocean will be using one eighth of all Christchurch's water - for free. And they'll be getting $9 billion a year retail for it. If you need an argument for pricing water, then that's it right there.

But more importantly, the greed of foreign water bottlers should not come before the needs of Christchurch's residents. The people of Christchurch should not have to go thirsty or face water restrictions because their water is being stolen for export. It is that simple.