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Centre Wellington chapter makes fight against Nestle well in Elora a cross-country grassroots effort

Chapter activist Diane Ballantyne and Maude Barlow at our Groundswell 2016 conference.

At our Groundswell 2016 conference in St. John’s this past weekend, Council of Canadians Centre Wellington chapter activist Diane Ballantyne highlighted an editable template letter with chapter activists from across the country.

That letter states, “We are very concerned about the application for a Permit to Take Water from a well on the edge of the village of Elora on the Grand River. Nestle Waters Canada has recently purchased the Middlebrook well just across the road from the Gorge Conservation Area. However they still do not have a permit to extract water. This is their third well in Wellington County. They are asking to take 1.6 million litres per day from that well, make an average of 100 tanker truck trips a day to truck that water to Aberfoyle, south of Guelph, and fill 3.2 million plastic single use water bottles to offer for sale as spring water.”

The letter asks the Ontario premier and minister of environment and climate change not to grant Nestle this permit.

Ballantyne encouraged chapter activists to personalize their letters and email them to Ontario premier Kathleen Wynne at premier@ontario.ca and Ontario minister of the environment Glen Murray at gmurray.mpp@liberal.ola.org. She also asked that those letters be cc’d to the Centre Wellington chapter at cwcouncilofcanadians@gmail.com and their coalition partners Save Our Water at info@saveourwater.ca.

Kelowna chapter activist Wes Kmet has now submitted his comments to the Ontario government based on the information shared by Ballantyne.

In addition, the Ontario government has now opened a 45 day period for public comment which closes on December 1. Premier Wynne says the province’s review of bottled water takings will be completed this fall. For more information on that public consultation period, please click here.

In the meantime, we have also launched a Boycott Nestle campaign that asks people not to buy bottled water. At this point, 38,779 people have now signed the pledge since it was launched at an evening public forum on September 22 in Guelph. To add your name to that pledge, click here.