Nestle Looking To Take More Water From Osceola County Well

A Northern Michigan water bottling plant is expanding.

But it means they want to pump more water and that’s a concern for some locals.

Right now Ice Mountain pulls water from a well they own in Osceola County.

They’re allowed to pump 250 gallons per minute.

They’ve applied for a permit to increase that to 400 gallons per minute.

 That water would be bottled at two new bottling lines at the company’s plant in Stanwood in Mecosta County.

It’s an expansion that adds 20 jobs.

“We have multiple sources, we take a balanced approach to those sources,” says Natural Resources Manager Arlene Anderson-Vincent.  

That’s why Ice Mountain say’s they’re looking to draw more water from the White Pine Well North of Evart. They want to go from 250 gallons a minute to 400 gallons.

“We’ve been monitoring that system since 2002, so nearly 15 years of ground water level, surface water levels, wetlands, aquatics other water users in the area, so we’ve done a lot of our homework up front,” said Anderson-Vincent.

They tell us they don’t expect any adverse impacts on the environment, and are waiting for DEQ approval.

“The well’s been operational since 2009, we’ve continued to monitor that well, and the withdrawal from that well, and the ecosystems that are dependent on water in that area,” said Anderson-Vincent.

Then there’s the city of Evart, who sells water to Ice Mountain.

The city manager says he doesn’t know how it will affect them.

“We have to wait and see what they do with White Pines and if there’s any decrease in our wells. If they increase White Pine, it decreases a little bit here because there’s always that fluctuation,” said city manager Zack Szakacs.

But people living in the area, still worry about the environmental impact.

“It’s really a hard question really because how will the water effect how will everyone? Water is very important for everybody for health, can’t live without water,” said Tish Hill who lives in Osceola County. 

“It’s really a hard question really because how will the water effect how will everyone? Water is very important for everybody for health, can’t live without water,” said Tish Hill who lives in Osceola County.