08 Nov 2018

Christchurch City Council is challenging a water bottling company’s resource consent application to take water from a second bore.

The Council has today endorsed a staff response to Environment Canterbury opposing Cloud Ocean Water Limited’s consent application on the grounds it could impact negatively on the city’s drinking water supplies.

Cloud Ocean already has consent to extract water from a shallow bore in Belfast but it has applied to Environment Canterbury to take water from a second, deeper bore.

“Our drinking water is treasured by our community and as a Council we are united in wanting to ensure nothing jeopardises our drinking water supply,’’ says Mayor Lianne Dalziel.

“We are very concerned that Cloud Ocean’s consent application, if granted, could impact negatively on our nearby wells, which we rely on to supply drinking water to homes and businesses in the north-west of the city.

“The number of homes and businesses in the northwest is growing and we expect to see demand for water in that area rising by 50 per cent over the next 30 years. We need to make sure we protect our wells so we can meet that forecast increase in demand.

“The Council’s view is that Environment Canterbury should not even consider progressing Cloud Ocean’s consent application without a thorough assessment into the potential impacts on the public drinking water supply,’’ the Mayor says.

“It is important that people understand that our opposition to Cloud Ocean’s consent application is unrelated to our request for people to use less water this summer.

“We are not short of water. The reason we are asking people to conserve water is because we need to be able to close down some of our wells so we can upgrade them. It is an infrastructure, not a supply issue.

“The reason we oppose the Cloud Ocean application is because it may undermine our ability to meet future demand for water and that is a risk we are not prepared to take,’’ the Mayor says.

Read the draft staff response.

Water – who does what in Christchurch

A glass of water.

Christchurch drinking water is mainly drawn from aquifers deep underground.

Environment Canterbury is responsible for:

  • Deciding who gets consent to take water
  • Ensuring the water is protected at source from contaminants

Christchurch City Council is responsible for:

  • The wells, the pipes, and the pumps
  • Ensuring the water is safe when it comes out of the tap

The Ministry of Health is responsible for:

  • Monitoring the safety of the public water supply