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Value Added Water: An approach to create business case for water sustainability in industry

Value Added Water (VAW) is an attempt to rethink the way water is viewed and valued, especially by water-intensive Industries. It helps build the business case on working with projects that are related to saving water in its various forms.

Water is at the heart of all production, but quantifying its business case has been elusive… until now

Water is often perceived as a ‘public good’ or ‘gift of nature’, abundantly available for use and as a result also becoming one of the most neglected natural resources. Value Added Water (VAW) is an attempt to rethink the way water is viewed and valued, especially by water-intensive Industries. It helps build the business case on working with projects that are related to saving water in its various forms. This document outlines the VAW approach to understand value “hidden” in various forms of water during use. It is especially useful in the following industries:

  • Paper and pulp
  • Pharmaceutical
  • Textile
  • Food and Beverages
  • Fertilizer
  • Chemicals
  • Power plants
  • Steel

Risks arising from non-availability of water

Fresh water has competing uses across agriculture, industry and domestic use. Though agriculture is the primary consumer of fresh water (for irrigation), the proportion varies across regions, depending on the levels of economic development of countries.

Globally, industry accounts for 19% of all water withdrawals, though with significant regional variations depending on the level of economic activity and level of maturity of the economy. It is estimated that industrial sector accounts for only 5% of freshwater withdrawals in low income countries but the number increases to over 57% in some high income countries.

With growing population, increasing demand of goods and changing consumption patterns, demand for fresh water by all segments – agriculture, industry and domestic is expected to significantly increase over the next few decades. 

To read the complete report, click here.

Category: 
Outlook Briefs

VAW

Author: sustainabilityoutlook