Carolyn Hrynyk, left, Suzy Coulter, Emma Lui and Molly Armstrong at the Nestle Waters plant in Hope April 3. Facebook photo Carolyn Hrynyk, left, Suzy Coulter, Emma Lui and Molly Armstrong at the Nestle Waters plant in Hope April 3. The campaigners held an action at the plant to challenge a recent sustainability certification Nestle received, as well as calling for Premier John Horgan to phase out bottled water operations across B.C. Facebook photo

Water campaigners hold action at Nestlé

Council of Canadians calls for phase-out of B.C. bottled water operations

A gathering at the Nestlé Waters plant in Hope last week was the latest in a series of actions by the Council of Canadians, who are calling for a boycott of Nestlé to stop its bottling of B.C. and Ontario groundwater.

On April 3, four water campaigners taped a hand-written sign reading ‘boycott’ in red lettering over the Nestlé Waters sign in Hope, aiming to challenge a recent certification the company received and the for-profit taking of water from Hope’s watershed. They also called for the Horgan government to phase-out these operations across B.C. and called for people to join the nation-wide Nestle boycott which has gotten 63,688 signatures to date.

“We really wanted to challenge that and really highlight that what they’re doing is not sustainable. They’re drawing 300 million litres of water from the plant every year. They are doing it, as far as we know, without a permit,” said water campaigner Emma Lui.

On March 21, Nestlé Waters confirmed the Hope factory as the first Canadian facility to get certified under the Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) Standard. The Council of Canadians calls this ‘bluewashing’, stating it is a self-certification as the AWS was created, according to the Council, by Nestlé and other large water corporations.

In an emailed response, Nestlé Waters Canada’s director of corporate affairs Jennifer Kerr stated the company “is proud to have achieved certification to the Alliance for Water Stewardship Standard – the only internationally recognized Standard developed in partnership with not-for-profit groups, including The Nature Conservancy and World Wildlife Fund.”

Water campaigner for the Council of Canadians Emma Lui said the operations of Nestlé Waters in Hope does not have a permit to extract water and also does not have prior-informed consent from the Sto:lo First Nation.

The Sto:lo Nation was not involved in the April 3 action at Nestlé Waters in Hope.

Kerr stated the company is following the BC Water Sustainability Act’s requirements for groundwater withdrawal and has filed a permit application with the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.

When the permit is released for review from the ministry, Kerr stated First Nations would be consulted.

“We have been in discussions and conducted plant and spring tours for the Sto:lo through their People of the River Referrals Office and also with other local First Nations interested. We remain open to conversations with all local First Nations,” Kerr stated.

Lui hopes by circulating the photo and video from the action online, that B.C. residents will be prompted to write to the Horgan government adding their voices to the Council of Canadians call for a phase-out of these water bottling plants.


Is there more to this story?


emelie.peacock@hopestandard.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Group forms in Hope to respond to homelessness, trauma and addictions

Homelessness Action Response Table (HART) full of local, regional, provincial movers and shakers

B.C. man facing first-degree murder charge in death of Belgian tourist

Amelie Sakkalis’ body was found on Aug. 22 near Boston Bar

New ‘meowyoral’ race featuring felines announced by Chilliwack animal shelter

Organizers hope the cat election will generate attention for both the shelter and municipal election

UFV hosts revitalized Literary Festival featuring some of its previous writers-in-residence

Taking over Mission’s festival, UFV hopes its Literary Festival will be just as popular

Friends and family remember Paul Kaji with a skate in his honour

Hope skater and community member passed away August 2017 of fentanyl poisoning

B.C. RCMP turn to Const. Scarecrow to shock speeders into slowing down

New addition will watch over drivers from a Coquitlam median for first-of-its-kind pilot in Canada

B.C. home to 1/3 of Canada’s overdose deaths in first 3 months of the year

There were 1,036 overdose deaths in the first three months of the year, with 94 per cent accidental

B.C. candidate moves from hospice care to council race

He beat terminal cancer twice and entered hospice when he decided to run for council.

Canadian tobacco exec pushes back against vaping health concerns

A warning from Interior Health about the unknown health risks of vaping is getting a partial rebuke

Ministry of Agriculture commits $300,000 to help B.C. farmers obtain land

B.C. Land Matching Program supports access to affordable farmland for young farmers

Lower Mainland city calls for slower trains near popular beach

Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner said ‘it’s the least we can do’

Canadian air force short 275 pilots

Attrition outpaces recruitment and training claims Air Force

Teacher suspended after physically shushing, saying ‘shut up’ to student

Grade 5 student reported feeling ‘confused and a little scared’

Most Read