Euro-Mediterranean Information System on know-how in the Water sector
International portal

News Water Footprint: Have Your Say

The Water Footprint Network has launched its Water Footprint Manual, covering a comprehensive set of methods for water footprint accounting. It shows how water footprints can be calculated for individual processes and products, as well as for consumers, nations and businesses, and includes methods for water footprint sustainability assessment and a library of water footprint response options.The current methodology shows how water footprints can be calculated for individual processes and products, as well as for consumers, nations and businesses. A "water footprint" is defined as a spatial and temporal indicator of direct and indirect freshwater use. Following water footprint accounting, the sustainability assessment phase should evaluate the water footprint from an environmental, social and economic perspective generating meaningful data to formulate response strategies.

As a founding partner of the Water Footprint Network (WFN) and because this is a living document, the WBCSD aims to play a key role in facilitating the exchange of experience and learnings among corporate pilot testers that could inform the development of the next version of the manual.

The decision to join the WFN built on the work of the WBCSD's water project, which developed the Global Water Tool (2007) that helps companies map their water use and assess risks relative to their global operations and supply chain.

Members of the water project recognised the rapid increase of initiatives relating to water measurement, impact assessment, standard setting, reporting and disclosure and mapped these out in an on-line report Water for Business (2009). The WBCSD decided to take a further step working towards a common approach to water use measurement and impacts assessment by engaging proactively with other stakeholders through the WFN.

This is very much a learning journey: "Integrating water quantity and quality with time and place into a measurement of sustainable water use is a very complex challenge," says James Griffiths, Managing Director of the Water Project.

The WFN and WBCSD are seeking comments and suggestions on this current manual based on studies and experience to by the end of May 2010.



Contact information Email:
News type CallForPaper
File link
Source of information WaterLink International
Keyword(s) Water Footprint, water quantity and quality, sustainable water use
Geographical coverage International
News date 04/03/2010
Working language(s) ENGLISH