WWF and Carlsberg join forces to protect freshwater | WWF Denmark

WWF and Carlsberg join forces to protect freshwater

Nyhed lagt på den 13 juni 2017   |  
Water is essential for all life
Carlsberg and WWF are working together to help Carlsberg define its global water strategy as part of the company’s new sustainability program Together Towards ZERO.

Just under 1 billion people still do not have access to clean and safe drinking water, and 2.6 billion lack adequate sanitation services. At the same time, freshwater species are declining fast.

Freshwater is the source of life. But it is also a resource under threat from poor private sector standards, unsustainable consumption, global population growth, and climate change.
”Scarce water resources and access to water are major challenges facing the planet right now: It is crucial that conserving natural resources is part of future business models, so that we can realise the UN Global Goals and secure a more sustainable development,” says Bo Øksnebjerg, Secretary General in WWF Denmark.

WWF has carried out an analysis of the water issues and risks connected to Carlsberg’s global operations, and the findings have served as a foundation for Carlsberg’s development of new ambitious sustainability targets in the area of water. As part of its new commitments, Carlsberg has pledged to reduce water use at its breweries worldwide by 50 % and engage in collective efforts to safeguard shared water resources in high-risk areas. Building on the findings of the analysis, Carlsberg and WWF are now working together to identify future projects in the areas identified as high-risk.


Access to water is a prerequisite for nearly all production of food, clothes and materials worldwide. Competition is increasing for access to and utilization of water resources, and private companies and markets have substantial interests and influence on water governance. It is therefore important for WWF to engage companies to solve the problems we face now and in the future. With the right partnerships we can show the way towards sustainable development.

”We are delighted to see Carlsberg become a water steward that leads the wayTogether with WWF’s global experts and local anchorage, Carlsberg can help secure water for people and planet in the future,” says Bo Øksnebjerg.
Facts about the partnership:
  • Carlsberg and WWF has worked together to identify the breweries that are exposed to high water risk now and in the future.
  • Carlsberg and WWF are now working to identify future water projects that will be part of Carlsberg’s newly launched sustainability program Together Towards ZERO.
  • Before 2030, Carlsberg will cut its water use in half across all breweries, with an intermediate target to reduce water use by 25% before 2022. 
Besides reducing the water use at its breweries by 50%, Carlsberg has pledged to cover 100% of its energy consumption with renewable energy by 2022, to achieve zero CO2-emissions from its breweries by 2030, and to reduce CO2-emissions from the value chain by 30% no later than 2030.
A few freshwater facts:
  • Since 1900, more than half the world’s wetlands have disappeared

  • Almost half the world's population will be living under severe water scarcity by 2030, if no new policies are introduced

  • We will need to double irrigation by 2050 to grow enough food to meet demand of an estimated population of 9 billion people

  • People will feel the impact of climate change most through fresh water; less water will be stored in ice and snow, more extreme events will cause droughts and floods

  • Hydropower produces more than one-fifth of the world’s electricity; nearly 500 million people have been negatively affected by dams

  • More than 5 million people die from waterborne diseases each year – 10 times the number killed in wars

  • Just under 1 billion people still do not have access to clean and safe drinking water

  • Freshwater species are declining at a faster rate than terrestrial or marine species


The primary threats to freshwater ecosystems are:


Water is essential for all life
© WWF Forstør


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