goal 6


6.1)   By 2030, achieve universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water for all  


Water, sanitation and hygiene are essential for human health, poverty elimination, and social and environmental well-being.  The core activity of AquaFed’s members is to help governments meet Target 6.1 and 6.2. Extending services, and devising special pro-poor initiatives are underway in both developed and developing countries.  In France, members (FP2E, Véolia, and Suez) are working with public authorities and local associations developing special tariffs and other systems to help people in economic difficulty to have secure water and sanitation services. Thousands of families have already benefitted from these.  In countries including Morocco (LYDEC), Haiti (LYSA), and others, members have set up similar systems specifically to help people, with limited means, access services. They are also upgrading infrastructure and operating procedures to improve quality and extending reliable services to more and more people. Initiatives like this are helping millions of people worldwide.  Other companies are involved in WASH in the workplace, an approach devised within WBCSD and now adopted by the UN Global Compact.  Successes depend on Public Authorities working with Businesses. Between them they set specific targets for every case. Business can take the initiative and propose objectives. Legitimacy and leadership is given by governments.


Gap Inc., through a partnership with Swasti Health Resource Centre, is helping to build water filtration plants in rural communities in India, which are providing clean water to thousands of people. Three systems currently in operation already serve more than 5,000 households and 29 schools across 30 villages in India.

P&G’s not-for-profit Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program (CSDW) has been working with a network of partners for ten years improve the health of children in developing countries by providing them with clean drinking water.Over the last decade, the program has collaborated with 150 NGOs, charities and governments to raise awareness of the global water crisis and deliver clean drinking water where and when it’s needed most.In 2014, P&G CSDW provided its 7 billionth liter of clean drinking water for children and families in need. 

In Latin America, there are new opportunities in the civil infrastructure and mining and metals industries. Currently, Bechtel's Mining & Metals; Infrastructure; and Oil, Gas & Chemicals business units are engaged in a project to deliver desalinated sea water to a mine site in the Atacama Desert of Chile at an elevation of 10,000 feet . By transporting desalinated water, the mine will reduce reliance on groundwater making it available for ecological uses and downstream users.

6.2)   By 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations

6.3)   By 2030, improve water quality by reducing pollution, eliminating dumping and minimizing release of hazardous chemicals and materials, halving the proportion of untreated wastewater and increasing recycling and safe reuse globally


Dow technologies enable access to safe and sustainable water resources to communities around the globe. In California, the Carlsbad Desalination Plant utilizes advanced reverse osmosis technologies from Dow Water & Process solutions to filter and separate salt and other impurities from the water molecules. Beginning operation in late 2015, the Plant has a desalinated water capacity of 50 million gallons, providing water from over 300,000 people and making it the most advanced and energy-efficient seawater desalination plant in the West Hemisphere. In Colorado, Dow’s TEQUATIC™ PLUS Filters have enabled an oilfield water producer to more than triple the use of recycled water to nearly 100 percent. Dow technologies have also improved the freshwater supply for POSCO E&C’s power plant in Gwang-Yang, Korea. Utilizing Dow products such as DOW™ Ultrafiltration (UF) Technology and DOW™ Reverse Osmosis (RO) technologies, the desalination plant can treat 30,000 cubic meters of seawater per day for use in the city’s power plant. 

Aquafed has a full "water cycle" approach to achieving the targets of SDG #6, which seeks to cover all aspects of the cycle from, "source to tap to source again."  Aquafed and its members are involved in managing water pollution and recovering wastewater. An example of this is Aquapolo, a partnership between public organisations, SABESP, a private operator Odebrecht Amiental, and a consortium of Brazilian chemical companies. This project recovers wastewater from the city of São Paulo and de-pollutes it to a very high quality to provide feedstock for a multi-industry chemical complex.  It saves water equivalent to the needs of 350,000 people every day, and the aim is to increase this value to 600,000.

Gap Inc. is working with suppliers to address the use of harmful chemicals in the production of its clothes—which have the potential to be discharged into local water supply. The company has set an ambitious goal to work towards zero discharge of hazardous chemicals (ZDHC) in its supply chain by 2020, through an industry collaboration – the ZDHC 2020 program. In 2014, the group achieved a major milestone with the creation of an industry-wide standard for restricted substances, which bans the use of harmful chemicals, particularly in fabric production. GAP has communicated this restricted substances list to the vendors, factories and mills that make its clothing and the company is in the process of creating enforcement mechanisms.

The company also works on environmental impacts through its Mill Sustainability Program, launched in 2013, which is focused on establishing clear environmental standards for fabric mills and integrating them into GAP’s sourcing decisions. To date, GAP has worked with 40 strategic mills to assess environmental performance, covering such issues as their water consumption, wastewater treatment and disposal, energy use, and the handling of waste and hazardous substances. GAP is also working with mills in China to participate in the Natural Resources Defense Council’s (NRDC) Clean by Design program, which brings together a range of brands to better address the water impacts of fabric mills. The program has achieved significant reductions in water and electricity use, as well as wastewater discharge. Finally, the company’s Water Quality Program also seeks to protect water quality in its supply chain through monitoring the wastewater created by denim laundries and requiring all laundries producing for Gap Inc. brands to adhere to a set of industry-leading guidelines on water quality. GAP made these guidelines a requirement for doing business with its brands in 2010 and adopted more robust enforcement mechanisms for underperforming facilities in 2013, including having a third party verify their compliance.

6.4)  By 2030, substantially increase water-use efficiency across all sectors and ensure sustainable withdrawals and supply of freshwater to address water scarcity and substantially reduce the number of people suffering from water scarcity


Philip Morris International (PMI) is developing and executing a strategy to responsibly use the water it needs, such as understanding what water we need and how not to negatively impact the quality of water resources, ensuring Access to Safe Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) in all our facilities, and seeking partnerships and working with others to improve water stewardship.  Furthering these principles through Good Agricultural Practices in the supply chain, in 2015 PMI achieved a 24% reduction in water consumption since 2010, beating its target of 20%. In tobacco-growing, PMI expects affiliates and suppliers to have a water management plan that takes into account the locations that are most at risk from water scarcity and promotes efficient water use and renewability of sources. These plans address the use and management of water to minimize adverse impacts to other users within water catchment areas, including local communities.  The plans also cover access to adequate, clean water for drinking, cooking, bathing, and cleaning purposes for local communities, workers, and their families. 

In 2014, Disney’s water consumption was recorded at 6.89 billion gallons. This falls slightly below the company’s baseline of 6.93 billion gallons. Disney continued to promote effective management of water use at existing sites while continuing to implement innovative conservation measures. By 2018, Disney is planning to maintain potable water consumption at 2013 levels at existing sites, and develop water conservation plans for new sites.   No new sites were added in 2014 and, therefore, there was not a need to develop new water conservation plans.

The Coca-Cola Company has committed by 2020 to safely return to communities and nature an amount of water equivalent to what we use in our finished beverages and their production. Between 2005 and the end of 2013, through 509 community water partnership projects in more than 100 countries, partnering extensively with governments, other industry, communities and civil society,

Coca-Cola balanced an estimated 68 percent of the equivalent water used in our finished beverages (based on 2013 sales volume), for a total of approximately 108.5 billion liters of water replenished to communities and nature. In addition, with partners across government, civil society and the private sector, more than $300 million in replenish programs has been invested globally.  More information can be found at http://www.coca-colacompany.com/water-stewardship-replenish-report/.  

McDonald’s understands the importance of water conservation for both its agricultural produce and the environment. Using the Global Water Tool developed by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, the company is assessing water efficiency in over 25,000 restaurants and formulating solutions for improvement. In the US, McDonald’s introduced several adjustments such as low flow urinals and drought tolerant landscaping. To combat water scarcity in Australia, McDonald’s has deployed multiple initiatives including rainwater harvesting as well as water usage training programs for restaurant workers. 

Pirelli’s 2013-2017 sustainability plan, which sets a number of targets for 2020, foresees a 58% reduction (from 2009 levels) in the specific water use ratio by 2020.  Pirelli’s water withdrawal trend has strongly decreased, and improvement is expected to continue until 2020, with a target of 50% reduction by 2017 and of 58% by 2020. 


Levi Strauss & Co. (LS&Co.) knows that water is critical to its business, the planet and people around the globe, and that the planet’s usable water is becoming increasingly scarce. For decades, LS&Co. has worked to reduce its water impact, change how the industry uses and thinks about water and educate its consumers about the important role they play. To minimize water use in the production of apparel, LS&Co. designers challenged themselves to create the same great styles their consumers love using far less water. The result was a series of innovative finishing techniques called Water<Less™, which can save up to 96% of the water in the denim finishing process. Since launching the Water<Less™ processes in 2011, Levi Strauss & Co. has saved more than 1 billion liters of water in the manufacturing of LS&Co. products. More recently, LS&Co. has taken its commitment to reducing water use in the apparel industry a step further by making its water reduction standards and tools, including its Water<Less™ innovations, publicly available to others within and outside our industry, and encouraging other denim companies – large and small – to use them in their production. LS&Co.’s goal is to increase the percentage of its products made with Water<Less™ techniques to 80 percent by 2020, up from 30 percent today.

6.5)   By 2030, implement integrated water resources management at all levels, including through transboundary cooperation as appropriate

6.6)   By 2020, protect and restore water-related ecosystems, including mountains, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes


Means of Implementation

6.a)   By 2030, expand international cooperation and capacity-building support to developing countries in water- and sanitation-related activities and programmes, including water harvesting, desalination, water efficiency, wastewater treatment, recycling and reuse technologies

IBM is providing Bangalore, India with Big Data and predictive analytics technology to create systems for monitoring and managing their water distribution systems. IBM worked closely with Bangalore Water Supply and Sewage Board (BWSSB) to create an operational dashboard, based on the IBM Intelligent Operations Center (IOC) which will serve as a “command center.” Using a Geo Information System (GIS), the IOC will enable monitoring of water flow, with a real-time view of the flow meters. The BWSSB will receive information on the amount of water transmitted by each flow meter, the amount of water supplied to individual parts of the distribution system, the level of water in each reservoir or tank, etc. All data from each meter will report to a single dashboard.

In India, McDonald’s has improved its business practices to prevent ongoing water scarcity. When harvesting rainwater, the restaurants’ direct the water flow into a storm drain. The rainwater then empties into a sedimentation or settling tank and finally into the water table via recharge pits of gravel, sand, and rocks that act as natural filters. McDonald’s India recharges 106,400 of water per year, using about 50 percent of rainwater that falls on the roofs.


6.b)   Support and strengthen the participation of local communities for improving water and sanitation management

In Nairobi Kenya, Ericsson implemented the “Citizen Field Engineer” project, an initiative that uses sensors to monitor water quality and supply which enables community residents to govern, maintain, and repair the physical infrastructure for water delivery. In exchange for their monitoring, residents receive mobile credits, thereby providing a financial incentive to continue with their water management.