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:
- 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
- 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?
- 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
- 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?
- Employee Concerns: Do employees
rely on an impacted water source for drinking, sanitation,
recreation, and other uses?
- 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?
- Public Health Concerns:
Are there local or global public health concerns related
to water impacts produced along the company's value
- 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?
- 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.
to Module 2