Disparity among European firms’ water management

Although some European companies are doing well with water management, others are lagging behind. That’s according to a new report from the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), which analyses data from 121 European businesses. […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

Although some European companies are doing well with water management, others are lagging behind.

That’s according to a new report from the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), which analyses data from 121 European businesses.

It reveals a growing disparity between the few leading companies and those who are failing to make necessary improvements in key areas relating to water management, creating risks for themselves as well as investors.

The report says 76% of European companies report board level water management, which is positive, although it adds increased disclosure, risk assessment and stakeholder engagement is necessary.

Two in five responding UK companies have already experienced detrimental water-related impacts to their direct operations and supply chains in 2016.

UK companies are generally doing well, with half of the firms achieving ‘A’ ratings coming from Britain. These firms are Coca-Cola European Partners, Diageo, AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Centrica and Unilever.

Businesses not doing as well in terms of water management included Continental and Lindt.

Also, 30 of 31 UK companies have set water targets and goals.

Morgan Gillespy, the Head of CDP’s Water Program, said: “Our analysis confirms the two speeds of water stewardship shown from European companies. It is impossible to ignore the growing gap between those leading water stewardship efforts and those companies being left behind.

“Whilst European companies perform well in governance of water issues, they must improve in reporting on key issues relating to water management, particularly as investors are calling for more detail. The latter will need to address these issues particularly as governments and competitors look to implement and benefit from the Paris Agreement.