The Ashburton District Council is hell-bent on selling the rights to extract 45 litres of Canterbury water a second to a mysterious company called "NZ Pure Blue".
But it wasn't counting on us. Over 35,000 of us have joined in solidarity with thousands of locals who are strongly opposed to the deal.
And for good reason. The deal gives the newly-formed corporation a free pass to drain 40 billion litres of water from their aquifers over the next 30 years -- and if the corporation drains the aquifer dry, the deal requires ratepayers to fill it up by draining the Ashburton River. A river that regularly runs dry.
We know that the pressure is getting to the Mayor and his councillors, so we're going to ramp it up. We're taking all 35,000 of your names to Ashburton -- and with your help, we'll make sure they can't ignore us.
Can you chip in to stop this dodgy water sale today?
No one has fought corporate water theft across the globe like SumOfUs. We made front-page news in Canada when Nestlé was taking public water for pennies a gallon and forced the government to re-write its water legislation. After a quarter million of us denounced another water grab in the United States, we earned Oregon a public review. We are actively fighting Nestle in California and Flint, Michigan too.
So, if enough of us raise our voice here, you better believe we can stop this sale.
Local council elections are just six months away. That means the elected officials behind this backroom deal are extremely vulnerable to public pressure. This water will be simply siphoned off, bottled and shipped abroad for massive corporate profit. We can’t let that happen.
One councillor has already broken ranks. The people of Ashburton will not "be thanking us in 30 years’ time,” said councillor Ken Cutworth, “for allowing people to almost suck water out with impunity.” It’s bad enough that the council thinks nothing of draining this nationally treasured resource -- but the secrecy of the deal and lack of consultation is unconscionable.
Can you chip in so we can deliver your signatures to the Ashburton District Council, stop this sale, and protect our water for future generations?