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Aucklanders Get 'A Grade' Water At A Price


NEWS RELEASE
16 February 2001

AUCKLANDERS GET 'A GRADE' WATER AT A PRICE

If you didn't already know it, Aucklanders have great drinking water - rated ‘A’ under the Drinking Water Standards set by the Ministry of Health. Watercare, the regions bulk water supplier which sells water to the local network operators such as Metrowater, and Ecowater in Waitakere wants to make sure it stays that way.

Auckland City Councillors have been briefed on Watercare's plans to ensure that Aucklanders continue to enjoy the quality and security of water supply they have today.

Councillor Vern Walsh, Chairman of Auckland City's Investment Committee said that there is community expectation of higher drinking water standards and better environmental outputs.

"It is pleasing to note that the community can have continued confidence in the quality of our drinking water with the acknowledgment that $13 million has been committed to meeting the mandatory new enhanced drinking water standards by the required date of 2005," said Councillor Walsh.

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The $13 million will be used to improve filter systems with new technology that will provide a barrier to disease carrying pathogens and further reduce the already low risk of giardia and cryptosporidiun passing through the filters.

"The fact that our region continues to grow rapidly does mean considerable ongoing investment in things such as dam refurbishment and the investment in the Waikato pipeline, due to bring high quality treated water to the region in 2002," he said.

Councillor Walsh said it must be acknowledged that this sort of investment comes at a cost, but to ignore the issues of quality and of a dependable supply would be both short-sighted and irresponsible.

"I suspect there would be many other cities envious of the reliability and quality of the water we get every time we turn on a tap," said Councillor Walsh.

Watercare has developed an asset management plan for its water business detailing spending on upgrading, renewing and investing over the next 20 years that will see $544 million invested in ensuring the region continues to have a reliable and high quality water supply.

ENDS
For further information please contact Councillor Vern Walsh,
Telephone 09) 626 5492 or 021) 770 283.

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