In another indication that smart water usage will become the next wave of corporate sustainability focus, Ford Motor Co. apparently has become the first company to join the Water Disclosure Project.
The Water Disclosure Project is related to the Carbon Disclosure Project, which is a disclosure framework that is now used by roughly 2,500 of the world’s largest companies to report their carbon emissions. Businesses committing to the Water Disclosure Project are focused on managing their impact on the globe’s shrinking clean water resources. It covers water usage, risks caused by a company’s business model, and other impacts that a given industry’s supply chain might have on the water supply.
Ford has made water conservation a top corporate priority for the past decade and it cut usage by 56 percent between 2000 and 2008. The automaker is one of the founding responders in the Water Disclosure project, which means that it will get to help define the protocol for water reporting.
Some of the things that Ford has done to cut its water consumption include optimizing its cooling tower operations (which also helps with energy efficiency) and investing in technologies, such as a reverse osmosis system it uses in Mexico to recycle water for use in production, which means higher quality water resources can be used for human consumption. The company also started adopting new parts washing technology in 2008, reducing wastewater generation by 95 percent AND cutting energy consumption. See the trend here: often, good water usage practices and energy efficiency go hand-in-hand.