The government of Ontario, Canada has announced proposed regulations for local operations of bottled water companies like Nestlé, and is now accepting comments on their proposals.
The proposed regulations are a step in the right direction, but they're not sufficient to ensure that local communities and their resources will be prioritized. Leaders and corporations must transition to thinking about water as a human right and a finite resource that is protected, shared and enjoyed by all of us.
Right now, the Middlebrook well is under siege by Nestlé, who recently purchased it. We want Nestlé to expropriate this well and give it to the town of Centre Wellington, so the local community can utilize it for drinking water. Expropriation would prevent Nestlé from demanding an obscene price for the well. We’re demanding that this and other key revisions be added to the government's proposals.
The Ontario Government has a stated goal to “improve our understanding of the cumulative impact of water takings on groundwater and how the demands for groundwater are expected to change as Ontario’s communities grow and our climate changes.” Let’s put the pressure on and ensure that local water resources are protected, all proposals for new and expanded water-bottling facilities are rejected, and local indigenous leaders areninvolved in all decision-making concerning local water resources.
The public comment period on the proposed regulations is open now and will be until December 1st. And you don’t have to be a resident of Ontario to have your voice heard.