Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Charges Sworn Following Extensive Antwerp Springs Probe

NORD, Coldstream, farm, owner face October court appearance

Kate Bouey 9/13/2011

An extensive investigation into the Antwerp Springs water contamination in Coldstream and Lavington last year has ended in charges under the province's water protection and environmental management acts. An Environment Ministry official says the North Okanagan Regional District, the District of Coldstream, Pan-O-Ramic Farm Limited and the owner of the dairy farm, Ernest Rodney Palfrey, are defendants in the case. All will make a first appearance in court next month. NORD and Coldstream are facing four charges including; operate well in a manner to cause adverse impact, introduce foreign matter into well, allow contamination of drinking water and fail to provide potable water. Under provincial legislation, a maximum one-million dollar fine can be imposed if convicted of `allowing the contamination of drinking water.' Pan-O-Ramic Farm and Palfrey have three counts against them including; allow the contamination of drinking water, introduce activity-related waste into environment and introduce waste into environment causing pollution. In January 2010, it was discovered that e-coli and other bacteria had seeped into the Antwerp well system affecting water to some 3500 residents in Coldstream and Lavington. Emergency officials worked overnight, knocking on doors to ensure all affected residents knew not to drink or even wash in the water. Thousands of litres of bottled water had to be trucked in.


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I have been a resident of Coldstream since 1976. I have had 15 years of experience on Council, 3 years as Mayor. As a current Councillor I am working to achieve fair water and sewer rates and to ensure that taxpayers get fair treatment. The current direction regarding water supply is unsustainable and I am doing all I can to get the most cost effective water supply possible.