Water scarcity

DEFINITION: A lack of sufficient available water resources to meet the demands of water usage within a region.

 

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Growing sustainability issues such as deforestation, soil erosion, biodiversity loss, fresh-water scarcity and the build-up of carbon emissions are all increasing stress on natural resources, according to  Global Footprint Network

Earth Overshoot Day: Humanity has exhausted all of 2017's natural resources

Humanity has already used up its entire annual budget of planetary resources such as water, soil and clean air on the earliest day of the year since the Earth first went into "overshoot" in the early 1970s, according to research organisation Global Footprint Network.

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Brewing for the future: How MillerCoors slashed its water footprint through supplier engagement

A supply chain management philosophy built on engagement over enforcement enabled brewer MillerCoors to reduce its water footprint by 17% last year. Here, Matt Mace investigates how the firm has been galvanising the farmer community to create resilient, future-proofed beer supply chains.

Waterwise urged the water sector to improve the information made available to customers on the water efficiency of products they buy

Water firms urged to scale up efficiency ambition

Water companies must scale up ambition and innovation in their water efficiency programmes with customers, according to not-for-profit organisation Waterwise.

Two-thirds of the world’s largest companies are reporting that exposure to water-related risks could generate a “substantive change” in business operations and revenues

Oceans apart: Why businesses need to embed water efficiency across departments

With water availability declining as energy demand rises, some of the private sector's leading lights on water management believe now is the time for businesses to embed holistic water stewardship programmes that capture the interests of other departments. edie's Matt Mace investigates.

The H&M Foundation has so far donated more than £5.3m to WaterAid, and will match that donation as part of the second-phase

H&M Foundation donates £5m in second stage of WaterAid partnership

The H&M Foundation is launching the second stage of its partnership with WaterAid to deliver safe water and sanitation to four of the world's poorest communities.

The 10-page guide explains how water retail competition could be used to consolidate bills, generate significant financial savings and deliver key environmental benefits for businesses

edie launches free water retail competition guide for businesses

Organisations across the country now have access to a free, in-depth 'edie explains' guide to water retail competition, which is set to come into effect in England this April and will impact all non-domestic water users.

The programme is thought to be the largest transformational change to the sector since its privatisation in 1989

Water retail competition: Thousands of business water customers switch in week one

A total of 8,876 premises have switched water retailer in the first week of the competitive market. This includes approximately 7,500 customers which chose to pre-switch before market opening.

More self-supply deals and supplier switches are on the horizon in England after water retail competition opened on 1 April

Whitbread and Kwik Fit seize opportunity of water retail competition

Hospitality giant Whitbread Group and vehicle servicing chain Kwik Fit are among the first wave of companies to capitalise on the newly-opened water retail market in an effort to improve efficiency and drive down costs.

The five-year project will see SEAT provide CNG vehicles to test the new fuels over a total test run distance of 120,000km

Breakthroughs for biofuel in aviation and transport sectors

Car manufacturer SEAT has provided insight into its innovative project that turns wastewater into a biomethane fuel capable of reducing CO2 emissions by 80% compared to traditional vehicles, while NASA has released data on the viability on using biofuels in jet engines.

Water retail competition will allow all non- domestic water users to switch suppliers of water retail services from 1 April

Water retail competition savings will be 'more than expected'

Water consultancy Waterscan has suggested savings returned to large multi-site customers in the competitive non-domestic water market will be "more than expected".

Global fresh water demand is expected to grow by 2% each year over the coming decades

Circular economy could save 11% of annual global water demand, research finds

The adaptation of circular economy methods in water-stressed regions could save 412 billion cubic metres of water each year, the equivalent to 11% of annual global water demand, according to new research from multinational banking group ING.

The CDP report found that 24% of carbon reduction activities planned by businesses are highly-water dependent

Businesses urged to 'wake up' over £11bn water risks

Businesses have been issued a "wake-up call" by a new CDP report which revealed that water risks fuelled by climate change cost the private sector $14bn (£11.3bn) over the last year.

The self-supply option will allow Greene King to buy its water and wastewater services at the wholesale price, which is a protected price that all retailers pay

Brewer becomes first to seek to supply its own water retail services

Pub retailer and brewer Greene King has become the first non-household water customer to apply to provide its own retail services when the market opens in April.

Beyond creating a 'nice story' as part of a company’s CSR commitments, what is the business case for not just investigating water security, but actually improving it?

Liquid assets: Strengthening the business case for water management

With global water supplies running dry at an alarming rate, edie's Matt Mace hears from some of the private sector's leading lights on tackling water scarcity to uncover the business case that lies beneath the surface.

President of Hungary Janos Ader called on businesses to prevent a looming water crisis Photo courtesy of Financial Times Live

Businesses urged to view water as economic risk rather than environmental issue

Efforts to combat water scarcity are "absent from the portfolios" of investors, and it is now the responsibility of the private sector to step up water efficiency practices to build understanding that water is an economic risk as well as an environmental one.

Scotland's incumbent water retailer Business Stream will manage the water services of the new multi-utility offering, while consultancy firm Utilitywise will oversee energy provision

New energy and water retail service offers businesses 'one-stop-shop' for utilities

UK organisations will soon be able to manage their electricity, gas and water use in one place thanks to a pioneering new partnership between non-domestic water supplier Business Stream and energy consultancy Utilitywise.

COP22 also dedicated time to prioritising climate justice. Coupling up with the water agenda, the topic of climate justice led to the introduction of the “Water for Africa” initiative

COP22: Water and climate justice share the spotlight with Trump

Wednesday was water day at COP22 in Marrakesh, and while the mood in Morocco was one of "sink or swim" in regards to an unprecedented US election, business took to the stage to call on governments to introduce a "speedy implementation" of the Paris Agreement.

A progress reported detailing updates to the goals will be issued in one year’s time

The Magnificent Seven: Food and beverage giants commit to water stewardship challenge

Sustainability advocacy group Ceres has tasked seven global food and beverage companies, including Diageo, General Mills, Kellogg and PepsiCo, to participate in a collaborative challenge aimed at strengthening sourcing and water stewardship action plans.

An effective response to the significant and growing risk of drought in England and Wales is possible if concerted action is taken now, Water UK says

UK businesses face increasing risk of drought, warns water sector

Companies are being called upon to ramp up water efficiency measures, share best practices and water consumption and open up new communication streams surrounding water conservation after a new report commissioned by water companies revealed the growing risk of drought facing the UK.

The new CSR targets continue PepsiCo's decade-long commitment to delivering 'Performance with Purpose', the firm's CSR strategy first launched in 2006

PepsiCo lifts lid on fresh green business goals

Global food and beverage company PepsiCo has unveiled a revamped list of climate commitments, incorporating plans to decouple emissions from business growth, have a positive water impact, and achieve zero waste to landfill.

Scotch whisky producers 'collective' volunteer strategy is the only one of its kind to cover an entire Scottish industry

Scotch whisky makers set 'challenging' green goals

The Scottish whisky industry has this week unveiled four new "challenging" sustainability targets in an effort to reduce carbon, drive water efficiency and embrace circular economy models in the supply chain.

David Lloyd has become one of the first companies to switch supplier ahead of the water market opening up to competition next year

Gym chain seals UK's largest water supplier switch

Sports and leisure business David Lloyd has switched to newly-formed retailer Water Plus to supply all 84 of its UK health clubs and gyms, marking the largest UK-wide water supplier switch to date.

The report notes that the rise in extreme weather scenarios will impact energy security unless smarter systems are introduced

Smarter energy systems crucial to combatting diverse new climate risks

An overhaul of financing mechanisms and policy framework is necessary to develop "smarter, not just stronger" energy markets, which will need to combat "unprecedented strains" arising from new climate commitments, a new report from the World Energy Council (WEC) has found.

Coca-Cola and its bottling partners improved water use efficiency by 2.5% between 2014 and 2015, adding to a cumulative 27% improvement since 2004

Coca-Cola hits global water replenishment goal five years early

Soft drinks giant Coca-Cola has become the first Fortune 500 Company to replenish all of the water it uses globally back to nature and communities.

edie has brought together the best water sustainability innovations into one neat and tidy blue bubble

World Water Week: Six innovations to quench the global thirst for clean water

With World Water Week bringing experts and innovators to Stockholm to foster new thinking and develop solutions to water-related issues, edie rounds-up the projects and products that could aid efforts to combat water scarcity.

10 ways to drive engagement with energy efficiency

edie brings you the second energy efficiency cheat sheet in association with E.ON, this time focusing on the top 10 ways to drive engagement and change behaviours around energy efficiency.

Sustainability Leaders Awards 2017: meet the winners!

Welcome to the winners report for the 2017 Sustainability Leaders Awards. Organised by edie, these awards recognise excellence across the spectrum of sustainable business; from the best efficiency programmes through to product innovation, from stakeholder engagement and CSR initiatives to the people making it happen.

INFOGRAPHIC: Energy efficiency benchmarking survey

edie, in association with E.ON, conducted a survey with selected readers responsible for energy management, asking them to identify the energy efficiency activity they had already completed or had underway.

Sector summary: The state of sustainability in retail

This edie insight report explores some of the key drivers, challenges and opportunities facing sustainable business within the UK retail sector.

Aldersgate Group manifesto 2017: A healthy environment, a competitive economy

The Aldersgate Group's manifesto includes calls for the prompt publication of both a detailed Clean Growth Plan and 25-Year Plan for the Environment, and a strong Industrial Strategy which enables the green business community to flourish.

edie explains: ISO 20400

This edie explains business guide, produced in association with edie's supporting partners Action Sustainability and BSI, provides an in- depth summary of the new ISO 20400 Standard which is the world's first international standard for sustainable procurement

Industrial strategy fit for the future: perspectives on building a competitive UK economy

This publication brings together the views of respected thinkers from politics, business, trade unions and academia on the kind of economy the industrial strategy should be building and the role low carbon and resource efficiency can play.

Election 2017 manifesto matrix: What the parties have said on energy and the environment

It's decision time. Tension is mounting among the green business community ahead of the UK election - but which party offers the most promising green policy approach? Here, edie has rounded up the most important inclusions (and exclusions) from each of the main parties' manifestos into a single, easy-to- read document.

WRAP's National Recycling Guidelines

Following extensive consultation with the recycling industry, WRAP has developed a list of items that can and cannot be recycled, along with how they should be presented by householders. This document outlines how and why the recycling guidelines have been developed, including a summary of results from consumer testing. 

Energy storage in the UK: An overview

The aim of this report is to increase knowledge of the industry among various stakeholders.

Executive Briefing: BS 8001 – a Guide

The world’s first standard for implementing the principles of the circular economy in organizations

A Resourceful Future – Expanding the UK Economy

This report by SUEZ reveals that more than £9bn could be added to the UK economy by integrating circular economy principles into the country’s emerging industrial strategy.

edie explains: Combined heat & power (CHP)

This edie explains business guide, produced in association with E.ON, provides an in- depth summary of combined heat & power (CHP) systems, which convert a single fuel into both electricity and heat in one process.

edie Live Exhibitor Spotlight: A-Consult

With only ONE WEEK to go before edie Live at the NEC on 23-24 May we get up close and personal with some of our exhibitors to find out what visitors can expect to see at the show, what's new and how they can help in the drive towards sustainability targets.

Top tips to achieve supply chain sustainability

You’re only as strong as your weakest link. For sustainability professionals, supply chains can be highly complex and full of links that must be closely managed and supported to help achieve overarching corporate social responsibility standards.

In practice: Costa's new low-carbon coffee roastery

What makes Costa Coffee’s new £38m roastery in Basildon "one of the most sustainable buildings in the world"? This free case study provides an overview of all the low-carbon and resource-efficient features of the retailer's flagship sustainability project.

edie Live exhibitor focus: Planet Mark

Ahead of edie Live at the NEC on 23-24 May, we get up close and personal with some of our exhibitors to find out what visitors can expect to see from them at the show, what's new and how they can help in the drive towards sustainability targets.

Power Forward: How the largest US companies are capturing business value while addressing climate change

The largest US companies are increasing their clean energy and energy efficiency efforts while improving their bottom lines.

edie explains: Onsite generation

This edie explains business guide, produced in association with E.ON, provides an in- depth summary of onsite generation, which allows businesses to make and use their own energy at a particular location, rather than buying that energy through the grid.

Join thousands of energy, sustainability, CSR and resource efficiency professionals at the UK's destination event for sustainable business

One month until edie Live 2017 - get your ticket now

With just one month to go until doors open for edie Live 2017 we take a look at why it is the destination event for sustainability and energy managers.

The skyline of Istanbul, Turkey - a nation that is currently 73% urbanised and projected to be 80% urbanised by 2030

Sustainability megatrends: Urbanisation, smart cities and the future of green business

edie's series of exclusive thought-leadership articles on the global impact of megatrends continues with PwC's director of cities and urbanisation, Dan Dowling, exploring how urbanisation and smart city growth can be a powerful force for sustainable development and shared prosperity, if it's managed correctly.

Planning for a circular economy

The Environmental Services Association, the voice of the UK’s resource and waste management industry, has set out a number of recommendations to more closely align the planning system with the strategic objectives of the circular economy.

In practice: GSK funds UK's first carbon-neutral laboratory

Designed for Nottingham University and built by engineering firm AECOM, the new GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Carbon Neutral Laboratories for Sustainable Chemistry project is a world-first, earning the highest certifications under the BREEAM and LEED standards and driving impressive savings.

Wise Minds: The energy transition and large utilities

The UK energy system is in flux. It is changing more quickly – and more fundamentally – than at any point since the Industrial Revolution.

The joint venture creates a business which will have more than a quarter of a million customers

Northumbrian and Anglian team up for water retail market

With just over a week to go until the non-household water retail market opens, Anglian Water Business (AWB) and NWG Business have teamed up to create a new retailer of water and wastewater services in England and Scotland.

From autinomous drones to virtual reality experiences, the sheer pace and acceleration of technological advances is having a huge impact on sustainable business

Sustainability megatrends: technological innovations for the earth

Continuing edie's series of thought-leadership articles on the global impact of megatrends, PwC's sustainability and climate Change partner Celine Herweijer explores how green innovations and technological breakthroughs are driving the fourth Industrial Revolution.

Perspectives for the energy transition: Investment needs for a low-carbon energy system

This joint study looks at the potential for decarbonisation in the energy sector in G20 countries and around the world and the economic and social benefits that can be developed as a result.

Hurd  repeated the reassurance that the government’s main objective in the privatisation process is to “ensure that any sale protects the Green Investment Bank's (GIB) green values

Minister responds to fears over GIB restructuring

Business and energy minister Nick Hurd has written to the head of the Environmental Audit Committee to respond to concerns over the restructuring of the Green Investment Bank ahead of its sale.

SDGs mean business: How credible standards can help companies deliver the 2030 Agenda

This new report published by WWF and ISEAL indicates how businesses can contribute strongly to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and unlock new market opportunities by using credible voluntary sustainability standards to transform entire sectors and supply chains.

10 top tips to drive engagement with your CSR report

What are the key components required to produce a sustainability report which drives engagement on a range of CSR issues among key stakeholders? edie brings you the secrets to sustainability reporting success with this latest top-tips guide for businesses.

edie has compiled a list of 10 top tips to change the behaviours of employees when it comes to energy efficiency, based on practical business examples

Energy efficiency: What does it take to change behaviours?

Aligning corporate energy reduction targets with individuals' motivations and behaviours can drive significant savings, but is incredibly difficult. Kicking off edie's engagement month of editorial content, we investigate how energy managers can get the rest of their organisation on board with his or her efficiency strategy and effect real change.

The employers’ guide to smart meters and energy efficiency awareness at work and at home

This document provides guidance and materials for running an energy efficiency awareness campaign at work, including practical advice to employees on how they can benefit from getting a smart meter and saving energy at home.

The farm to fork aspect of the manifesto will be rolled-out as part of a series of blogs, videos and infographics that highlight the need for large-scale changes

Unilever's Sustainable Nutrition Manifesto aims to prove that food shouldn't 'cost the earth'

In a change of pace from the numerous electoral manifestos, Unilever has launched a new agenda that commits to creating "food that tastes good, does good and doesn't cost the earth".

The New Plastics Economy: Catalysing action

This new report is one of the first key deliverables of the New Plastics Economy initiative.It represents a logical next step to the 2016 report: from rethinking the future of plastics to catalysing action.

edie explains: Water retail competition

This edie explains: Water retail competition guide provides an in-depth summary of the government-led strategy which will allow all non- domestic water users to switch suppliers of water retail services.

Aiming high: Being an SME has obvious downsides in terms of scale and access to markets, but if you can be quick to learn and change, those downsides become strengths

Big ambitions: How SME's can become sustainability leaders

Next up in the series of contributed articles for edie's Sustainability Leadership Month, Andy Wood, chief executive of Suffolk-based brewer and distiller Adnams, outlines how small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can incorporate sustainability in their business agenda.

Aiming high: Being an SME has obvious downsides in terms of scale and access to markets, but if you can be quick to learn and change, those downsides become strengths

Big ambitions: How SME's can become sustainability leaders

Next up in the series of contributed articles for edie's Sustainability Leadership Month, Andy Wood, chief executive of Suffolk-based brewer and distiller Adnams, outlines how small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can incorporate sustainability in their business agenda.