18 Mar 2017

Few local objections to shipping water overseas - mayor

9:42 am on 18 March 2017

Most Westland residents are happy with a proposed commercial water pipeline, mayor Bruce Smith says.

Mount Aspiring

Mt Aspiring Photo: RNZ / Steve Wilde

Representatives of Westland District Council and the company Alpine Pure met in Haast yesterday to discuss land consents required for a water pipeline running from Mount Aspiring National Park to Neils Beach, near Jackson Bay.

The water would then be piped to ships and sold overseas.

Some people were concerned about the lack of public consultation about the plan, but mayor Bruce Smith said that despite national public interest, residents living near the proposed pipeline were not raising any objections.

"There is very little interest. There are some affected parties who have submitted against it - and of course they're entitled to - but I can tell you from my point of view and listening to the jungle drums [nearby there is] very little interest.

"In fact, I'd go so far as to say none."

He said few locals were objecting because of the environmental and economic benefits the pipeline would bring to the West Coast.

A decision about the land consents will be made in the next three weeks.