New guide identifies most effective water tools, helps business sustainably manage water

Posted: Tuesday 18th September 2012

TheWorld Business Council for Sustainable Development(WBCSD), the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and SustainAbility today releasedWater for Business. It is the first guide specifically designed for businesses to help them identify the water tools and initiatives most suitable for their business needs and environmental sustainability. This online guide will help businesses use water more effectively and support their efforts in adopting more sustainable solutions in partnership with other stakeholders.

“Business has a leading role to play in the management of natural resources, especially in the use of freshwater resources, for which there exists no substitute,” said James Dalton from IUCN Global Water Programme. “We rely on water to grow our food, produce our goods, and generate our energy.”

“The Water for Business guide can support businesses to find their way in tools aimed at managing water in a more equitable and effective manner, in the interest of companies’ performance, balanced with growing population demands and healthy ecosystems,” further noted IUCN.

“This is an essential guide for business, especially when you consider that 80 percent of the global population now lives in areas where the threat to water security is high¹. That, coupled with the spread of industrial and agricultural activity, is putting additional stress on local aquifers. So businesses need to have frameworks within which they can measure, manage and assess their impacts, especially those moving into emerging markets,” added Joppe Cramwinckel, Director, WBCSD Water.

With the publication of Water for Business, the WBCSD recognizes that one initiative alone will not satisfy the needs of every business, local community or stakeholder group. The guide outlines the benefits of the different tools available, illustrates how a combination of complementary tools can best meet wide ranging needs, and helps businesses to manage the complexity of water-related challenges.

"Water is becoming an increasingly precious resource for businesses across sectors and around the world. Managing it effectively - both within and beyond the facility fence line - is essential to ensuring that both businesses and communities prosper long into the future. Water for Business can help business leaders sort through the myriad of tools and resources available and select the ones that are most useful for their individual situation," said Jeff Erikson, Senior VP at SustainAbility.

“The new edition of Water for Business is a particularly valuable resource for manufacturers wishing to evaluate their water management programs in the context of the current water sustainability space,” concluded Paul Wiegand, Vice President, Water Quality at NCASI whose insights and technical expertise have been instrumental in making this project a success over the past few years.

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