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Tool Sections: Overview Module 1 Module 2 Module 3 Module 4 Module 5
Key Questions to Assess Probability of Changes in Water Impact Requirements

Tool users should assess the likelihood that one or more the drivers for change will affect the business in the near future. For each water impact identified in Module 1, at each stage of the value chain, consider the probability of changes occurring to water quality and impact requirements. Changes that can influence the need for changes related to water quality and impacts include:

  1. Vulnerability of Water Source: Will the status of water sources affected by the business activities and/or products be likely to provoke new regulatory requirements related to water impacts? (See Water Source Profile)
  2. Water Quality and Availability Demands of Other Users: Are the water availability and quality needs of others likely to be affected in the future by water impacts along the business' value chain? If so, what pressures would this create to reduce water impacts?
  3. Community Concerns: Does the local community rely on an impacted water source for drinking, sanitation, recreation, and other uses? How are community interests and expectations in the business' impacts to a shared water resource, such as a local river or aquifer, likely to change in the future? Will changing local demographic factors affect community expectations?
  4. Shareholder Concerns: Are shareholders or other investors paying closer attention to the business' water-related environmental performance? Are shareholder resolutions or other shareholder pressures likely to create pressures to reduce water impacts in the future?
  5. Employee Concerns: Do employees rely on an impacted water source for drinking, sanitation, recreation, and other uses?
  6. Customer Concerns: Do customers require an adequate source or quality of freshwater to use your company's products or services? How might customer expectations change regarding water quality impacts associated with products and services they purchase and use?
  7. Public Health Concerns: Are there local or global public health concerns related to water impacts produced along the company's value chain?
  8. Ecosystem Health Concerns: How healthy are local ecosystems? Are there threatened or endangered species in the area? Are there potential links between the water impacts from busines activities and/or products and ecosystem or species health?
  9. Political Concerns: Are changing politics at the local, national or international level likely to affect public and government expectations about certain water impacts?

Identifying potential water quality and impact concerns from the sources above provides valuable information for making the business case to reduce or eliminate the water impact. Addressing water impact concerns before regulatory requirements and other limits are imposed can reduce risk and improve competitiveness.


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