You are here

water

Aqueduct Global Maps 2.0

Awareness around the physical, regulatory, and reputational water risks to companies and their investors is on the rise and robust, comparable, and comprehensive data is needed to help assess these water-related risks.

Aqueduct Water Risk Framework

Awareness around the physical, regulatory, and reputational risks that water can pose to companies and their investors is on the rise. We need robust, comparable, and comprehensive indicators to help assess these water-related risks.

In response to this demand, WRI developed the Aqueduct...

publication
Water

Aqueduct Global Maps 2.0

There's a growing awareness around the physical, regulatory, and reputational water risks to companies and their investors. Robust, comparable, and comprehensive data is needed to help assess these water-related risks.

In response to this demand, WRI developed the Aqueduct Water...

publication
Water

Big Business and Sustainability: The Missing Links

This piece originally appeared on The Guardian's Sustainable Business website.

As another year begins, big business will continue falling well short of taking the leadership role on the sustainability the world urgently needs. While many chief executives now publicly identify sustainability as a key issue for their companies, walking the talk is proving more elusive.

Successful bosses do not procrastinate. So why are boardrooms dragging their feet as sustainability challenges that have an impact on the private sector mount? As an observer of business trends for two decades, I see two interlinked problems hindering progress: first, corporate failure to embed sustainability into core business strategy, treating it instead as a standalone issue. And second, the lack of tools that allow corporations to make this leap in their day-to-day operations.

A Critical Moment to Harness Green Infrastructure—Not Concrete—to Secure Clean Water

This post was co-written with James Mulligan, Executive Director at Green Community Ventures.

Natural ecosystems provide essential services for our communities. Forests and wetlands, for example, filter the water we drink, protect neighborhoods from floods and droughts, and shade aquatic habitat for fish populations.

While nature provides this “green infrastructure,” water utilities and other decision-makers often attempt to replicate these services with concrete-and-steel “gray infrastructure”—usually at a much greater cost. Particularly where the equivalent natural ecosystems are degraded, we build filtration plants to clean water, reservoirs to regulate water flow, and mechanical chillers to protect fish from increasing stream temperatures. And even though healthy ecosystems can reduce the operational costs of these structures, investing in restoring or enhancing various types of green infrastructure is rarely pursued—either as a substitute for or complement to gray infrastructure.

Despite America’s history of reliance on gray infrastructure, now is a critical time to tip the scales in favor of a green infrastructure approach to water-resource management. Investing in the conservation and improved management of natural ecosystems to secure and protect water systems can keep costs down and create jobs. Green infrastructure can also provide a suite of co-benefits for the air we breathe, the places we play, the wildlife we share our landscapes with, and the climate we live in.

Pages

Stay Connected