Te Teko locals alarmed by high arsenic levels found in water supply

By Mere McLean
  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

Te Teko locals upset with the quality of their drinking water came face-to-face with the Mayor and councillors of the Whakatāne District Council today.

With new water standards set in place, a council contractor has discovered high levels of arsenic in the water supplying Te Teko and Edgecumbe.  Council hoped to install new connections to improve water quality, but funding was only available for residents in Edgecumbe and Awakeri.

Rihi Vercoe says, “The Council draws the water from underground reservoirs and the best water is supplied to the affluent communities, while the worst is given to the poorer ones.”

According to Whakatāne Mayor, Tony Bonne, “We are doing our very best. We have got a health subsidy to do Edgecumbe, now we are going back to the government and regional council to make sure that we can get the subsidy to get Te Teko included at the same time when Edgecumbe is being fixed.”

In the meantime, Te Teko residents can only sit and wait for a solution to be put in place.  

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