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Comment from Davos

28 January 2011


The water issue is accelerating at the World Economic Forum in Davos this week. From an MIT workshop on the water-food-energy nexus, to the launch of a new campaign by the young global leaders to raise water awareness (http://www.yglwater.org/), it's popping up everywhere.

Water is always a local challenge, but research from the 2030 Water Resources group  suggests that we will see so many local challenges that it is now a major global issue. On Thursday morning Alan Clark, MD of SABMiller Europe, spoke at the latest meeting of the WEF water initiative. Over the last three years this has grown to be a major meeting of over 20 national presidents,  ministers of water, planning or trade, plus heads of international organisations and 30 or so CEOs of major companies, plus leading NGOs.

Most exciting is that these discussions are resulting in concrete actions. Ministers from India and Jordan talked about how the workplan is leading to better management of water on the ground, and South Africa is also keen to be part of the process.

Its amazing how much water is used to grow the food we eat and the clothes we wear. At the meeting a new book 'Water Security' (Island Press) was launched which explains why water underpins economic growth and human security. The book includes a case study by SABMiller CEO Graham Mackay on our leading water footprinting work and our Water Futures partnership with WWF and GIZ.

It looks like water will continue to be a big topic as the year progresses. Check back regularly to see SABMiller's latest progress on water.

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