N.H. Grants USA Springs Water Bottling Permit

USA Springs and the state of New Hampshire have reached an agreement on a groundwater withdrawal permit allowing the company to collect over 300,000 gallons per day from wells on its property.

The company wants to build a water bottling plant on its property in Nottingham, N.H. The most recent permit application met with the state's approval, the Department of Environmental Services said in a news release Friday.

The permit requires water-level monitoring at 43 locations and intensive analysis at eight areas with wetlands. Such monitoring must take place before the groundwater withdrawals, the state said.

The company first submitted a permit application in May 2001, originally proposing to withdraw up to 439,000 gallons a day from three bedrock wells and a spring. USA Springs completed testing and analysis and submitted those results in February 2003.

But the DES denied the application that August because it did not meet several regulatory requirements on water quantity and quality. USA Springs requested another hearing, which the state granted. But then the state denied the application in December due to groundwater contamination issues. USA Springs submitted a new application on Dec. 29.

The company must still obtain approval to use its wells as sources of bottled water, the state said. The company likely will apply for approval once issues associated with contamination at a nearby waste site are addressed, the state said.

Many residents of Nottingham and nearby towns oppose the plant because they fear it will dry up their wells or spread pollution.


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