Crystal clear water is pumped from a test well in Lincoln in 2017. Credit: Ashley L. Conti | BDN

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Lawrence Butler contributed an excellent guest column in the BDN on Maine’s water resources and how they are currently being exploited. He enumerates a number of significant water-dependent projects that are currently being proposed in Maine. With climate change already affecting water supply, his call to look at the big picture, rather than simply evaluating each proposal one-by-one was apt. The overall goal would be to protect the best interests of our state.

I can add two more concerns to Butler’s list. Top of mind is Poland Spring water. No longer a Maine company, it was owned by Nestle for many years and recently   sold for $4.3 billion to a private equity firm. Do they even pay for the vast amount of water they extract from Maine from which they earn a profit? Does anyone think that a private equity firm in New York has any true concern for Maine’s water or Maine’s future?

A more local example exists in the lovely town of Harpswell. Like many areas of Maine, it is experiencing a real estate boom. But as new homes are being built in a town that   relies on private wells, existing homes are running low on water or experiencing salt infiltration. How does one determine when the capacity to build has been reached? And what can a town do about it? There will not be easy answers, and Maine has many issues of concern. Here is one more that demands our attention.

Carey Donovan