Bottled water companies watched
Water businesses have been accused of breaking the law with recent groundwater extractions in NSW.
Tweed Shire council is “carefully considering its legal options” in response to several “noncompliance” allegations from the public about water extraction businesses, according to the council’s planning and regulation director, Vince Connell.
“Council’s lawyers are … reviewing the matters and provide regular advice on how to address compliance relating to existing operators,” Mr Connell says.
The council has received numerous complaints from the public in photograpsh and other documentation about water trucks exceeding the number of trips permitted by their licences.
Campaign group Tweed Water Alliance says water trucks have been filmed operating through the night, despite being subject to a 7am to 7pm curfew.
Locals are concerned companies are mining groundwater in excess of their extraction limits.
The area is home to four commercial groundwater extraction operations: Mount Warning Spring Water (Uki), Pristine Water Supplies (Kynnumboon), Quest Natural Spring Water made by Rosehill Estate (Nobbys Creek), and Karlos Family Trust (Urliup).
It is unclear which, if any, of those companies are under investigation.
The bottled water extraction companies in the area all say they are in compliance with their licences and can manage the industry sustainably.
Australia Beverages Council chief Geoff Parker says the industry take water security very seriously.
“The bottled water industry is coexisting with other much larger users of water, whether that be irrigation or more broadly agriculture or industry, and ensuring we all use it responsibly.”