Increasing stress on water resources poses tremendous emerging risk for enterprises. Forced to contend with the growing likelihood of severe drought, leaks that go undetected for weeks or months, and escalating water rates that make rampant water use unsustainable and business unprofitable, facility managers can no longer rely on monthly water bills to fully address water usage and management on their properties.
In its Water Analysis Trends and Emerging Risk Report, Banyan Water illustrated how the interconnectedness of numerous water-related variables on a property can yield unwanted water risk. Disproportionate water consumption, weak and aging infrastructure and accelerated urban population growth only heighten the risk for facility managers who lack visibility into their water systems. Most only review a few water data points that arrive on their bill each month, but are blind to the complexities and hidden costs of water mismanagement.
Enterprises in the U.S. are paying attention to water risk and responding with technology solutions and sustainability initiatives that reduce and prevent water waste, optimize usage and ultimately maintain profitability.
Assessing Water Risk at the Enterprise Level
Enterprises tackling modern-day water challenges are relying more than ever on a support network of innovative technologies and environmental stewards to help them responsibly manage enterprise-level water use and mitigate emerging water risk.
High-consumption complexes—such as commercial real estate properties, academic and tech campuses, industrial facilities—are turning to organizations like GRESB that provide capital markets with environmental, social and governance (ESG) benchmarks for real assets. ESG data helps decision-makers at these large sites increase sustainability and responsibly manage water facilities.
The CDP also supports enterprises evaluating environmental impact and water security by providing reporting and disclosure opportunities that prompt actionable change. Datasets resulting from transparent disclosure keep organizations accountable, help to identify risks and position participants ahead of policy changes that ultimately set the stage for a more sustainable future. Since 2010, the number of companies disclosing water security information increased from just 176 to more than 2000. In 2018, 31 companies were rated with an “A” in water security, demonstrating their commitment to water risk management.
How Enterprises are Leveraging IoT-based Software to Mitigate Risk
While organizations like GRESB and the CDP are establishing critical new frameworks for approaching and evaluating water management, enterprises must also invest in advanced software to empower facility managers with a comprehensive view of their property’s day-to-day, real-time water usage.
Intelligent, IoT-based software can gather thousands of data points across a property in real time, providing a deeper analysis than a monthly water bill. Cloud-based water conservation technologies evaluate numerous factors, including multiple water sources, indoor fixture flow rates, landscaping irrigation needs, water usage patterns and more, to determine the best approach for water optimization.
For example, HP Inc., a leader in sustainability efforts, recently set a goal to reduce its potable water consumption by 15 percent by 2025. By leveraging intelligent water management software, the company optimized water from three unique sources, saving more than three million gallons of water across 450,000 square feet of landscaping on the company’s Palo Alto campus since 2017.
Leveraging real-time water data through IoT-based software can have a tremendous impact by pinpointing water risk areas early, preventing disastrous and costly issues. In its Water Analysis Trends and Emerging Risk Report, Banyan Water also identified more than 850 leaks for its customers, preventing more than 234 million gallons of water waste.
By understanding the threats to water management and the tools available to combat water risk, facility managers can make actionable decisions for their properties that reduce operational risk, increase asset value and contribute to a more sustainable future.