Branje, together with her group Bung the Bore, gained public attention in mid-2016 after successfully halting negotiations between Ashburton District Council and NZ Pure Blue to extract billions of litres of water from aquifers beneath the town.
With the general election months away, Banje hoped her “Save Our Water NZ” petition would mean people took notice of water exportation.
“Water will be a major issue at this year’s election and we want it legislated and protected.”
Private land at Neil’s Beach, a tiny community beneath the national park, would effectively become a water-export facility if Okuru Enterprises’ plans went ahead, with billions of litres of water each year piped down a remote mountainside and onto waiting ships.
Okuru Enterprises, a consortium of West Coast locals, has many of the resource consents needed for the project, including permission to take and export 800,000 tonnes of water – about 800 million litres – each month.
A hearing next month will decide if the project gets other needed resource consents, including permission to build its storage facility at Neil’s Beach.
there is a chinese company in hawkes bay drawing free water from the ground,adding no value , selling at a profit & using the nz brand as a selling point.they pay nothing for our water & nothing for the use of the brand which the current authorities have to change.fiji govt made changes in 2010 charging fiji water 15cents per litre tax.the company threatened to move operations from fiji to nz so the govt counteracted by threatening to give the well to another company.fiji water backed down & the fijian people are receiving $22.6 million of revenue from $150 million of water exports.if fiji govt can do it -why cant we? in hawkes bay 4.3 billion litres of water is given away free.our current pm cut the ribbon on a new bottling plant there last year.imagine the benefit to communities in hawkes bay if these companies paid tax pe r litre.a bottle,cap & label is 15cents .the chinese coy had water stopped (quality issues) at the border of china last year so in effect they are contributing to destroying a hard fought global brand of quality.
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