The importance of water management and ways companies deal with it, as well as the main drivers and main obstacles to sustainable water management, are the focus of a new study presented online today.
All the food that we eat depends on water, from grain to beef. More than 70 per cent of the Earth is covered by water. 2.5 per cent of this is fresh water; the water we need to sustain life.During the 20th century the demand for water increased sixfold, while the world’s population doubled. The 2015 Global Risks report identifies the water crisis as one of the top risks we are likely to be facing soon.The highest in terms of impact.
It is evident that water scarcity is a global issue for which we are responsible, as individuals and as professionals too. This is not just a personal or societal question. Freshwater is a limited resource that businesses depend on and they are beginning to realize this. In addition to setting a good example and blazing a path for sustainable water management, proactive players will gain a competitive edge, as recently highlighted also by The Global Opportunity Report 2015. Better water management is not only necessary, it also represents a business opportunity.
The global certification leader DNV GL – Business Assurance, in cooperation with with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and supported by the international research institute GFK Eurisko, has investigated the water management approach adopted by companies in different sectors in Europe, North America, South America and Asia.
The survey was conducted in December 2014 and investigated the importance of water issues and the way companies deal with them, the main drivers and the main obstacles to sustainable water management, together with the initiatives implemented by DNV GL – Business Assurance customers.
Water supply is unquestionably a key topic: not only at a personal and societal level but from a business perspective too, most of all in terms of efficiency of consumption. Nevertheless, despite widespread concern, there is still a lot to do before we can turn concern into concrete commitment and responsible actions.
However, things are moving. The survey of 1,907 professionals from the primary, secondary and tertiary sectors highlights that most companies consider water issues relevant for their business strategies. Many of them are also adopting ad hoc policies for this purpose and they probably would be driven to do even more if external pressure from customers or other stakeholders were as strong as it is for aspects like pollution or safety, etc.