Danone-AQUA: The Importance of Preserving and Protecting the Water Cycle for Sustainable Water Availability amid Climate Change

Published on 6 May 2022

In commemoration of World Water Day, Danone-AQUA held a Webinar entitled “Preserving Water Availability amid Climate Change". According to data released by the UN World Meteorological Organization, most countries in the world are unprepared for water crises, such as floods and droughts that are expected to worsen with climate change. Globally, the report found that 25% of all surveyed cities already experience periodic water shortages. Over the past two decades, the combined supply of surface water sources, groundwater, and water found in the soil, snow, and ice on the planet has decreased to 1 centimeter per year. Hence, by cooperating with stakeholders ranging from governments, non-governmental organizations, and also social media activists, this event is expected to provide a more comprehensive perspective that water sustainability and climate change are challenges in ensuring the water availability in the present and the future. Therefore, it is important for stakeholders to jointly address it. Danone-AQUA also wants to spread the initiatives that have been carried out on water conservation from upstream to downstream.

Dr. Ir. Muhammad Rizal, M.Si., Director of Water Resources Engineering Affairs from the Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing of the Republic of Indonesia (PUPR) in his speech explained, " The water usage Index in Indonesia shows that some places such as in Java, Sumatra, Sulawesi, and Bali and Nusa Tenggara have moderate to severe critical status, for the water usage index reaches 50% - 100% for various purposes such as domestic, industrial and agricultural. This is a challenge faced by Indonesia, so the Ministry of PUPR must answer with infrastructure development and water resource management aimed as much as possible for the welfare of the community. This is also done to realize the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially the 6th goal, namely the fulfillment of clean water and proper sanitation in a situation where climate change is currently quite extreme where Indonesia also needs to meet the 13th goal of the SDGs simultaneously, namely Climate Change Management.”

"The involvement of the community and business entities can foster a sense of responsibility in the water resources management and it is expected that the performance of the infrastructure that has been built can be better maintained. Therefore, we appreciate AQUA – DANONE who has held the commemoration of World Water Day 2022 to strengthen our sense of responsibility in preserving Indonesia's Water Resources”, Muhammad Rizal continued.

Integrated Water Management based on watersheds is needed to maintain the balance of the water cycle and ensure that the people around the watersheds are safe from any disasters in order to maintain their livelihoods. A well-managed watershed can ensure that the availability of groundwater is maintained to meet water needs in downstream areas, most of which are urban residential areas and industrial areas.

Responding to challenges as well as opportunities, one of which is the responsibility of businessmen, Danone-AQUA delivered its programs and initiatives in conducting attempts to preserve the water cycle as well as the water availability. In addition, the attempts to measure the success of positive water impacts have also been carried out together with the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN). BRIN validates the analysis and calculation of Stewardship of Water Management activities conducted by Danone-AQUA using the Volumetric Water Benefit Analysis (VWBA) method at two AQUA factory locations, namely Mekarsari and Babakanpari at the Kubang water source.

The Head of Climate and Water Stewardship Danone Indonesia, Ratih Anggraeni, explained "Danone-AQUA thoroughly contributes to protecting groundwater resources by returning water to ecosystems, using water responsibly and improving access to clean water for communities. We are committed to maintaining water resources for environmental sustainability and business with communities and stakeholders. We maintain the quantity and quality of water in watersheds by initiating hydro-geological research, conservation programs, and the establishment of water user forums to ensure the involvement of all stakeholders in managing watersheds.”

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