The specter of Niagara Bottling getting a permit to pull more water from the aquifer beneath Groveland is guaranteed to light up readers across Lake County.
A recent column prompted a variety of reactions from readers angry that the St. Johns River Water Management District is poised to double the amount the private bottler is allowed to withdraw. Nobody thought doubling the pumping was a marvelous idea.
Here's a sample of what readers think:
The question comes to mind: Why would any water "management" district approve a request from an outfit like Niagara if there truly is the type of looming water crisis that the so-called experts are predicting? It would be nothing short of insanity if it were true.
Let's assume for the sake of argument that it's not true. There is no looming shortage, and the ones who can profit the most from yelling "wolf!" every time they open their mouths have created the shortage presumption.
They gain an ear for their rhetoric and more importantly, they lock down job security. What a sweet deal! They say, "Could you imagine the shape we would be in without the St Johns Water Management District?"
My take is that our "shape" would be better or at least unchanged. They're just another useless group of bureaucrats sponging off the public they are hired to protect.
I am on a campaign to stop this atrocity of Niagara pumping and will continue until the issue is resolved. I am sick of being bashed by various government agencies and businesses that care nothing for the communities they oversee. This is but one example.
If this is allowed, they will only come back for more until there is nothing to take, and we will be left with the sinkholes, expensive water and higher taxes to repair their damage.
Niagara will take its profits to California and move on to pillage somewhere else.
I am on the Clermont chain of lakes and enjoy the water very much. For the past few years, we have been having trouble getting into our slip in the winter months. We are some of the lucky ones — a lot of slips are bone dry.
Now Niagara is asking to double their use of our water. This smells of greed.
I have been involved in the water conservation field for almost 12 years in Central Florida. During that time, I attended numerous water summits, conferences and seminars hosted by a variety of agencies, including the St. Johns and Southwest Florida water management districts.
The subject is always the same: Florida is running out of clean, cheap, potable water.