Heineken NV has published its latest finance and sustainability annual report, providing a detailed update on Brewing a Better World, its global sustainability strategy – one of its five business priorities.
The report has revealed a 33 per cent decrease in water consumption in the company’s breweries since 2008, as well as a 49 per cent drop in carbon emissions from production.
Chairman Jean-Francois van Boxmeer explained in his opening statement that in the last ten years, Heineken has lowered its water usage by nearly one-third to 3.4 hectolitres of water per hectolitre produced, as well as 3.1 hectolitres in water scarce areas last year.
In March 2019, the company was already ahead of its 2020 targets, so introduced its 2030 water ambition Every Drop, with the plan being to drive continuous improvement where water consumption is concerned, as well as improve the water catchment areas surrounding the brand’s production sites.
Some 15 breweries in water scarce areas have started their own water balancing projects, which includes solutions such as wetland restoration and reforestation.
Heineken is keen to make sustainability an integral part of the business as a whole, covering everything from sourcing and producing to marketing and selling products, right down to how they’re consumed and how waste can be reused and recycled, aligning this ambition to the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Freshwater ecosystems are under growing pressure from the demands of global agriculture, business and communities, with 75 per cent of the world’s freshwater resources used for crop or livestock production. Increasing pressure is being put on water quality by population growth, urbanisation and economic development.
In addition, one of the main effects of climate change is disruption to the water cycle. Changes in our weather patterns known as drought and deluge are now making some places a lot drier than before and other places a lot wetter.
If you find these facts concerning, you may want to follow in Heineken’s footsteps and start looking at your own water stewardship to see what improvements could be made in order to help protect global water resources.
Water is essential for business operations so it’s vital that companies understand the risks associated with water usage and consumption. This means they’re better able to introduce strategies to minimise these risks and make sure their operations continue to be sustainable in the future.
View stewardship as a way of continuing to drive improvements where your water usage is concerned, while also reducing the water-related impacts of your business. It is also your commitment to managing shared water resources sustainably, collaborating with local communities, governments, other businesses and non-government organisations.
If you’d like to find out more, get in touch with H2o Building Services today.