In the week of World Oceans Day, Procter & Gamble announced a major expansion of its environmental sustainability efforts that will make more water available in critically water-stressed areas around the world. This comprehensive effort includes a global portfolio of water restoration projects which will provide a range of solutions to protect ecosystems, replenish groundwater supplies, reduce the amount of water diverted from essential bodies of water, and improve water quality for the communities and wildlife that depend on them.
P&G’s commitment is highlighted by an unprecedented goal of restoring more water than is consumed when using its products in the critically water-stressed metropolitan areas of Los Angeles and Mexico City.
P&G’s strategy aims to help build a water positive future by reducing water use in manufacturing, responding to water challenges through innovation and partnerships, and supporting projects in 18 water-stressed areas around the world, including new projects announced. These new goals and actions build on the company’s existing Ambition 2030 sustainability efforts across climate, nature, waste, and water.
“Water is one of the world’s most critical natural resources, and something too many often take for granted. For years we have been focused on reducing water use in our operations and innovating to help consumers use less water in the home, but there is much more we can all do,” said Jon Moeller, P&G President and Chief Executive Officer. “Together with our partners, we are expanding our efforts that will improve, manage, and protect water resources in stressed areas that will help sustain people and nature for generations to come.”
RESTORING WATER FOR PEOPLE AND NATURE
Nearly one-third of people globally are experiencing water scarcity and that number is expected to double by 2025. P&G’s new goals and projects focus on addressing the water that does not go back down the drain or to local systems from our operations and, for the first time in our industry, from consumer use of products. “We worked closely with the World Resources Institute (WRI) Water Program to ensure these new water targets align with the best science and emerging target-setting practices,” says the company.
P&G has added two new goals to its already comprehensive program:
- Making of its products: Restore more water than is consumed at P&G manufacturing sites in 18 water-stressed areas around the world.
- Use of its products: Restore more water than is consumed when using P&G products in the high water-stressed metropolitan areas of Los Angeles and Mexico City. These metropolitan areas account for over half of the total water consumed during the use of P&G products across 18 priority water-stressed areas.
The company aims to achieve these goals through partnerships with leading environmental organizations and restoration projects that improve, manage, and protect water resources.
“P&G’s Water Goal applies a rigorous analytical approach and complements the other aspects within its comprehensive water management strategy. It adds an unprecedented ambition to address water consumption and provides a roadmap for others to adopt goals in the face of our shared water problems,” said Colin Strong, head of corporate water stewardship at the World Resources Institute (WRI) Aqueduct Program.
NEW PROJECTS FOR GREATER IMPACT
The company is working with on-the-ground partners who have a deep knowledge of local challenges to support solutions that will result in meaningful benefits to water in each basin. The multinational announced six new restoration projects throughout the Bear River basin in Utah and Idaho, in partnership with the Bonneville Environmental Foundation’s (BEF) Business for Water Stewardship program.
These projects are in addition to the eight projects P&G began supporting in 2020 in California’s Sacramento River basin and the Colorado River Indian Tribes (CRIT) System Conservation Project in Arizona, which helps shore up declining water levels in Lake Mead.
In total, these projects are expected to restore billions of liters of water for people and nature by 2030 and provide other important benefits to surrounding communities.
“P&G is innovating and setting a high bar for how a company can address shared water issues,” said Todd Reeve, BEF CEO and Business for Water Stewardship Co-Founder. “By deploying a comprehensive approach that tackles water challenges in the home and supports key local restoration projects in stressed watersheds, P&G is leveraging its unique capacity in new and high-impact ways that should establish the standard for corporate environmental water stewardship.”
In the coming years, the company will work with new and existing partners on additional water restoration projects with long-term benefits in other priority water-stressed areas around the world.
RESPONDING TO WATER CHALLENGES THROUGH INNOVATION AND PARTNERSHIPS
Through long-standing partnerships, P&G has used its expertise in innovation and consumer understanding to unlock new solutions to water challenges, building on its existing efforts:
Through longstanding partnerships, P&G have brought its experience in innovation and consumer understanding to unlock new solutions to water challenges, building on its existing efforts:
- Providing clean drinking water to people in need. The goal is to provide 25 billion liters of clean drinking water to children and families in need around the world by 2025 through its Children’s Safe Drinking Water (CSDW) Program.
- Accelerating water innovation at scale. The company is leveraging its water chemistry expertise and water-efficient products to make everyday living more sustainable as founding members of the 50 Liter Home Coalition.
- Enabling people to reduce their water footprint. Together with its brands, P&G aims to continue to create and share products, tools, and information to help consumers use less water at home.
The company continues to make progress toward making its facilities and manufacturing plants more water efficient. All P&G sites located in water-stressed areas are dedicated to understanding their local watersheds, creating action plans, and addressing key challenges impacting its operations and the local communities where operates.
“Creating a ripple effect toward a water positive future requires widespread solutions – from manufacturing and product innovations that improve consumers’ lives in a sustainable way, to restoring water for nature, wildlife, and communities,” said Virginie Helias, Chief Sustainability Officer.