Water policies and stewardship

Our commitment: Advocate for effective water policies and stewardship

Our commitment: Advocate for effective water policies and stewardship

Providing enough water for a rising global population to drink, and for producing enough food, is a global challenge that requires collaborative action, so we welcome growing stakeholder interest in water stewardship issues. We believe governments must deliver policies that enable universal access to clean, safe water and sanitation. Playing our part alongside public, private and civil organisations, we are leading in high-profile water initiatives around the world.

Our objectives

By 2016: Continue to build the 2030 Water Resources Group Public Private Partnership by adding two more countries per year, and further develop and publicise the Global Catalogue on Good Practices.

By 2016: Support the launch of CEO Water Mandate Guidance for Companies on Respecting the Human Rights to Water and Sanitation and pilot test the Guide in our water due diligence in selected markets.

By 2016: Support the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) to achieve 50 signatories of the WASH Pledge.

By 2016: Initiate the roll-out process of the Alliance for Water Stewardship’s (AWS) International Water Stewardship Standard by implementing it in at least five locations.

By 2016: Work with the Sustainable Agriculture Initiative Platform (SAI Platform) and the Sustainable Food Lab (SFL) to implement the Water Risk Assessment and Mitigation collaboration initiative in at least one sourcing area of agricultural raw materials.

Our progress

Nestlé currently chairs the 2030 Water Resources Group, a public–private–civil society collaboration that aims to address supply and demand issues in water-stressed locations by 2030. Work has been going on for some time in South Africa, Karnataka (India) and Mongolia, while projects in Kenya, India and Bangladesh started during 2015. The plan is to add one or two countries annually over the next couple of years.

As a founding signatory of the UNGC CEO Water Mandate, we actively participate in its workstreams on Policy Engagement and the Human Right to Water, and attended the Mandate’s 15th Working Conference in Stockholm in August 2015. We contributed to the publication and launch of the Guidance for Companies on Respecting the Human Rights to Water and Sanitation; this forms the basis for the Nestlé Guidelines Respecting the Human Right to Water and Sanitation, finalised this year.

Nestlé champions the WBCSD Pledge, in our own operations and beyond, promoting access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) for all employees. To date, 38 signatories have adopted the WASH Pledge, securing access to water and sanitation for 2.2 million employees.

We have produced internal guidance on the AWS International Water Stewardship Standard to strengthen water stewardship at key Nestlé locations and, having used the standard’s principles in Sheikhupura, Pakistan, a wider roll-out is underway, including in California, United States, during 2016.

Just a year after the SFL and SAI Platform launched the Joint Water Risk Assessment and Mitigation project, enabling food companies to share strategies for assessing and mitigating water risks, Nestlé has participated in the initial mapping phase. In 2016, we plan to support the SAI Platform in its mitigation efforts in selected regions.

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