Cumberland council will continue to push the Province for more action to prevent bottling of groundwater for commercial purposes. (File photo)

Cumberland council will continue to push the Province for more action to prevent bottling of groundwater for commercial purposes. (File photo)

Cumberland keeps pushing for groundwater protection

Council will raise issue with Province again through Union of BC Municipalities

Cumberland council still wants to push the Province for greater groundwater protection.

Members of council responded to a message from Bruce Gibbons of Merville Water Guardians about the lack of action by the Province toward a Union of British Columbia Municipalities resolution calling for no licensing and extraction of groundwater for commercial bottling purposes.

Gibbons had led the opposition to a water bottling operation proposed for the Merville area and has raised the issue with local governments such as Cumberland’s. In his submission to council, he included the Province’s response, which said that under the Water Sustainability Act, any application for water use is reviewed to ensure sustainability and to protect existing uses.

“It’s not the response we wanted, and I am extremely disappointed, but not surprised. The response is the same as every response we have received previously,” he wrote to Cumberland council.

Gibbons asked council to contact the Minister of Forests Lands Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development to express concern, and to ask the Province to reconsider its position.

At the June 22 council meeting, Coun. Jesse Ketler said the next chance to bring the issue up at UBCM will be online rather than in person.

“I think there would be an opportunity to bring this forward again there, maybe talk to the UBCM executive and have some more advocacy around this,” she said.

Mayor Leslie Baird said they should find out soon whether they will have online meetings with ministers as part of this forum. She said this opportunity would probably prove to be stronger than a letter to the Province. In response to a question from Coun. Vickey Brown about writing a letter as well as meeting ministers, the mayor agreed a letter would be the right initial move.

Council passed a motion to write the letter and will also contact the UBCM about the next steps to take in bringing forward the issue, ideally before ministers.

RELATED STORY: Cumberland moves to ban bottled water businesses from zoning bylaw

Early in the year, Cumberland’s council, in response to a request from Gibbons, moved to ban bottled water businesses within its zoning bylaw.

RELATED STORY: Water bottling proponent defends plan to Cumberland

Shortly after, the proponent of the bottling operation planned in Merville, Scott MacKenzie, appeared before council to refute claims by his opponents, saying his water licence with the provincial government, among other things, would not make wells run dry or harm nearby land.



mike.chouinard@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CumberlandDrinking water

Just Posted

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the shooting of an Indigenous woman in the Ucluelet First Nation community of Hitacu. (Black Press Media file photo)
Island First Nation wants ‘massive change’ after its 3rd police shooting in less than a year

“We need to get to the root of what is actually happening with the RCMP and our communities”

Oak Bay resident Hugh Thompson died Friday, May 7. (GoFundMe photo)
Oak Bay dad dies mountain biking near Shawnigan Lake

Community rallies around family with online fundraiser

The Regional District of Nanaimo has its sights set on busing to the Cowichan Valley in time for March 2022. (News Bulletin file)
Bus link between Nanaimo and the Cowichan Valley expected by next March

Unallocated transit hours already in Regional District of Nanaimo budget

Test positivity rates in Greater Victoria from April 23 to 29. (BC CDC data)
Leaked data shows View Royal top of COVID-19 list for Greater Victoria

View Royal mayor says week was a blip for the township, not the norm

The medical clinic building in Port McNeill. (Bill McQuarrie photo)
Solution pending to Port McNeill health care uncertainty?

The town appears to be ‘closer to a new and sustainable medical model for our town’

The B.C. legislature went from 85 seats to 87 before the 2017 election, causing a reorganization with curved rows and new desks squeezed in at the back. The next electoral boundary review could see another six seats added. (Black Press files)
B.C. election law could add six seats, remove rural protection

North, Kootenays could lose seats as cities gain more

Nurse Gurinder Rai, left, administers the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to Maria Yule at a Fraser Health drive-thru vaccination site, in Coquitlam, B.C., on Wednesday, May 5, 2021. The site is open for vaccinations 11 hours per day to those who have pre-booked an appointment. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
COVID vaccine bookings to open for adults 40+, or 18+ in hotspots, across B.C.

Only people who have registered will get their alert to book

Dr. Victoria Lee, CEO of Fraser Health, hosts an update on efforts to contain B.C.’s COVID-19 transmission in Surrey and the Fraser Valley and protect hospitals in the Lower Mainland, May 6, 2021. (B.C. government video)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate slowing, 20 more people die

Deaths include two people in their 40s, two in their 50s

The Canadian Forces Snowbirds are in the Comox Valley for their annual spring training. Photo by Erin Haluschak
Suspected bird strike on Snowbirds plane during training in Comox

Pilot followed protocols and landed the aircraft on the ground without any problems

Carter Woods was first across the line at the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Saturday in Altstadt, Germany. File photo
Cumberland mountain biker wins World Cup race in Germany

First Canadian on the podium since 2013

BCIT. (Wikimedia Commons)
BCIT apologizes after employee’s ‘offensive and hurtful’ email leaked to Métis Nation

BCIT says employee’s conduct has been investigated and addressed

The Village on Third in Nanaimo won the Judges’ Choice award as top overall entry at the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board Commercial Building Awards. (Photo submitted)
Top developments north of the Malahat honoured by Vancouver Island Real Estate Board

Nanaimo’s Village on Third takes top honour at VIREB Commercial Building Awards

Most Read