Two thirds of major businesses report risk from water shortage


Some of the world’s largest companies are taking action to address water shortages that are risking the growth of their business.

According to the latest annual global water report, released by international NGO CDP, two thirds of companies listed on the FTSE Global 500 Equity Index reported exposure to water risks.

A total of 22 per cent anticipate that issues around water could limit the growth of their business.

In particular, this is being felt most in emerging markets such as Brazil, China, India and Mexico.

Companies such as Diageo, H&M, Merck and Unilever are responding to this treat by evaluating how water quality and quantity affects their growth strategy, according to the report.

However, it also found that 42 per cent of the companies requested by investors to divulge information related to their water risks failed to do so.

CDP chief executive Paul Simpson said: “Water is an essential resource for any business. The potential for water-related problems to damage brand value or limit corporate growth is increasingly understood. We live in a time of unprecedented demand for water and have seen the number of investors seeking accountability from companies on this issue through CDP rise more than fourfold in just four years. It is of grave concern that such a significant group of companies is failing to communicate management of water risks to their shareholders through our global system.”