The goal is smarter, more sustainable water use by industry
Ecolab Inc. has expanded its commitment to World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to support the Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) in establishing a global water standard. The AWS International Water Stewardship Standard aims to support water users globally in taking appropriate actions to evaluate and improve their impacts on watersheds.
Ecolab's two-year pledge includes annual financial support and in-kind technical support and guidance by company experts to field test the draft AWS standard.
"Water scarcity and poor water quality impact more than a billion people around the world, and millions die every year from diseases linked to water and sanitation issues," said Douglas M. Baker, Jr., Ecolab chairman and CEO. "Ecolab is fortunate to have considerable water management expertise, and we're sharing this expertise with others who are working on the serious water challenges facing our world."
WWF is one of 10 organizations that form AWS, aiming to promote the responsible use of freshwater. The Global Water Roundtable, a multi-year, multi-stakeholder standard development process sponsored by AWS, is working to finalize the International Water Stewardship Standard.
Under the agreement, Ecolab will:
- Test the draft AWS standard with select customers at several locations to gain real-world experience in applying and refining the standard; and
- Build market awareness of the need for, and advantages of, using the standard to reduce potential water risks by minimizing the negative impacts of water use in industry.
The first draft of the AWS International Water Stewardship Standard was released in March at the World Water Forum in Marseille, France. When finalized, the standard will define a set of water stewardship principles, criteria and indicators for how water should be managed at a site and watershed level in a way that is environmentally, socially and economically beneficial.
The standard is intended to provide water stewards with an approach for evaluating existing processes and performances within sites and watersheds, and ensuring that responsible water stewardship actions are in place to minimize negative impacts and maximize positive impacts.