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“Collective action is to turn shared risks into shared opportunities.”

Sep 12th, 2012 |

Stockholm, August 2012. “Collective action is to turn shared risks into shared opportunities.” With these words, Sabine von Wirén-Lehr, European Water Stewardship (EWS) Director, introduced her presentation at the CEO Water Mandate Panel in Stockholm, Sweden. On the occasion of the Stockholm World Water Week 2012, the CEO Water Mandate organized its 9th Working conference to discuss and share good practice regarding corporate water disclosure, water-related collective action, business, water and human rights.
We came out last year with the European Water Stewardship standard which provides the private sector, farmers, businesses but also municipalities with a tool to asses and improve their sustainable water management. The EWS standard is closely linked to collective action. If you want to be a water steward, you have to look out of your fence. According to the EWS standard, a good water steward needs to respect public participation, to have a profound knowledge of the activities within the river basin, to actively involve the supply chain and to look for high conservation value areas around its production site. The EWS standard can support this process as a tool providing defined criteria for Water Stewardship that can serve as common aims in these collective actions. The evaluation according to the EWS standard can show how collective action partners have reached their collective aims”, Sabine von Wirén-Lehr said. “In this context, the European Water Stewardship is currently setting up a project on so-called “Local Deals” together with the RISE Foundation.”


Sabine von Wirén-Lehr, European Water Stewardship Director

During the session, the UN Global Compact’s CEO Water initiative released its Corporate Water Disclosure Guidelines. These Guidelines support business  in setting up collective actions – starting with the company’s understanding of its water challenges and effective (out-of-the-fence) responses, to establishing a dialog and building credibility with key stakeholders and paving the way for future partnerships and achievement of shared water-related goals. “It is our hope these Guidelines drive convergence with respect to how companies report their water management efforts while helping to minimize reporting burdens, thus allowing companies to allocate more time and resources to actively managing water,” said Gavin Power, Deputy Director of the UN Global Compact and Head of the CEO Water Mandate.
The CEO Water Mandate Corporate Water Disclosure Guidelines can be downloaded here.

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