Ford First Automaker to Join CDP Water Disclosure Project

the Water Disclosure Project has asked more than 300 of the largest global companies to report for the first time on water use and other water-related issues. Photo: Flickr/Ken Mau

Ford Motor Company announced Wednesday that it will join the CDP Water Disclosure, making it the first automaker to take part in the initiative.

Sponsored by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), the project has asked more than 300 of the largest global companies to report for the first time on water use and other water-related issues, to increase the availability of high-quality business information and raise awareness of water-related risks.

According to a press release, “The CDP Water Disclosure will serve as a central clearinghouse for Ford and other participating companies to report on water usage, water risks and water management plans of company operations and their supply chains.”

Water scarcity is quickly becoming a critical global issue with significant social and environmental implications and all of us need to be part of the solution,” says Sue Cischke, Ford group vice president, Sustainability, Environment and Safety Engineering. “For the past decade, Ford has made it a priority to conserve water. Joining the CDP Water Disclosure is another important step in our commitment to this issue.”

Ford’s water reporting builds on its leadership in greenhouse gas reporting. Ford has reported to the CDP on its successful efforts to reduce its carbon footprint since 2003.

During that same period, Ford cut energy use at its global facilities by 34 percent and CO2 emissions by 44 percent. Ford has set a goal to reduce new-vehicle greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. and Europe by 30 percent by 2020, compared to a 2006 model year baseline.

Ford launched its own voluntary Global Water Management Initiative in 2000, which included water conservation, reuse of storm and process water and management of water quality. From 2000 to 2008, Ford cut its global water use by 56 percent, or 9.5 billion gallons.

Water scarcity is quickly becoming a strategic issue for global businesses. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development forecasts that 47 percent of the world’s population will be living in areas of high water stress by 2030, unless new policies are introduced.

According to the CDP, climate change impacts are more likely to be felt through means of water, such as changing patterns of precipitation and water runoff affecting supply. Population growth, urbanization and rising per-capita consumption will be key components to decreasing water supplies.

“Water, like climate change, is set to be a key issue for the 21st century,” says Paul Dickinson, Carbon Disclosure Project CEO. “With greater understanding through water usage reporting, companies like Ford can play a significant role in developing and implementing solutions to the water challenge going forward.”

Other major participants of the CDP Water Disclosure include Molson Coors Brewing Company, L’Oreal and PepsiCo.

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