Charting New Waters – State of Watershed Payments – Executive Summary for Business

This Executive Summary for Business builds upon data and analysis from Charting New Waters: State of Watershed Payments. In Charting New Waters, Ecosystem Marktplace tracks the size, scope, and outlook for investments in watershed services and in the ecological infrastructure from which they flow, focusing on transactions between investors and watershed service providers.

Washington D. C., 17 January 2013

This Executive Summary is based on the Report "Charting New Waters – State of Watershed Payments 2012". It Reviews findings that are of specific relevance to private sector decision- makers to offer a benchmark for business investments in nature-based solutions to the water crisis.

Both this Executive Summary and the full report rely on proprietary data collected via surveys, interviews, and desk research covering over 300 watershed investment programs in more than 30 countries.

In 2013, the World Economic Forum rated the risk of a global water supply crisis as a greater threat than worldwide food shortages or the diffusion of weapons of mass destruction, both in its probability of occurring and the seriousness of impacts. For business, water security poses an undeniable challenge in the coming decades: nearly three-quarters of Global 500 companies surveyed this year say that their business faces substantive water risk.

From a business perspective, managing watershed and supply-chain risks at their source will be critical in navigating a water-insecure future. To focus only on efficiency or management at the level of direct operations means missing key risks and opportunities. Investors are beginning to understand this and are rewarding companies with a water stewardship perspective. This brief captures the first volley in a new way of thinking about water resources. A few business leaders have already found that IWS approaches can lower costs, improve local relationships, and create new opportunities – turning risk into a competitive edge. Many more have taken initial steps toward understanding the nature and level of water risk. But it will require a collective effort on all fronts – policy, business, and NGO – to translate this awareness into action.

You can find the study here.

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