Water availability and quality is a growing global challenge for many organizations as they struggle to meet regulatory requirements, stem rising costs, reduce impacts, and ensure business sustainability.
The World Economic Forum (WEF) forecasts a water supply gap of 40 percent by 2030 and in 2015, two-thirds of the world's largest companies reported their exposure to water risk at more than US$ 2.5 billion.
A robust water management strategy has become essential for maintaining compliance, improving performance and protecting reputations. Customers, investors, communities, and regulators are all placing an organization’s environmental performance under increasing scrutiny. Yet, opportunities exist for organizations to proactively assess, manage and mitigate their water risks.
A strategic approach to water
ERM works with clients to understand, quantify, and address water-related risks across all areas of the organization, from planning a new project to optimising operations or increasing productivity at existing facilities.
We help clients integrate the technical and operational aspects of water management into an organization’s strategy and business operations, allowing risk management to occur as an integrated part of normal business operation rather than as a disconnected process. This can include:
- Identifying and prioritizing social, environmental, and economic water risks;
- Developing a business case that articulates key water risks and potential financial exposures;
- Understanding and solving permitting and compliance issues such as water pollutant management, operational discharges, and contamination potential;
- Defining a water strategy framework that meets operational and regulatory needs and objectives; and
- Developing actions and accountabilities for successful implementation frameworks such as water stewardship.
Reducing reputational and regulatory risk
In addition to helping companies meet regulatory requirements and increasingly stringent pollutant discharge criteria, ERM’s technical support and rigorous methodology helps our clients ensure the quality and longevity of water resources for both their own needs and those of the wider community. We apply a deep understanding of water issues to help companies improve operations, reduce water use, control costs and ensure compliance.
By taking a strategic approach to water management, organizations can ensure continuity of operations in the face of supply challenges, and safeguard reputation and competitive advantage.