Industry water use may be revealed

By ALLAN McNEILallanm@gladstoneobserver.com.au

GLADSTONE City Councillor Matt Burnett has lashed out at the Gladstone Area Water Board (GAWB) for not telling the public how much water is being used by local industry.

Cr Burnett has been calling for the amount of water used by industrial customers to be made public for more than a year, with past requests rejected by GAWB.

GAWB responded to an initial request last June by stating that individual water usage could not be provided because it was "...a matter of commercial in-confidence.'

However, Cr Burnett is now calling for GAWB to at least give a total amount of water used so it can be compared to residential water use.

From there we can work out who's using what,' Cr Burnett said.

However Cr Burnett said he still believed Gladstone's ratepayers were entitled to know exactly how much water each industry was using and accused GAWB of hiding behind commercial in-confidence as an excuse.

'I have no doubt they don't want us to know this information (a total water usage amount) either, but what are they going to hide behind this time?' Cr Burnett said.

We are entitled to know what is coming out of that dam, water is our resource not theirs.

Cr Burnett said with local residents constantly trying to reduce water usage, it was only fair for them to know if local industry was doing the same.

GAWB chief executive officer Rod Hayes said while information pertaining to individual contracts could not be provided, he could see no reason why Cr Burnett's most recent request could not be accommodated.

Mr Hayes said if individual industries wanted to publicly release how much water they were using then that was up to them, but it was not a matter for GAWB to decide.



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