NEW YORK CITY, July 22, 2009
As per capita availability of freshwater has declined globally, water, which is both indispensable and irreplaceable, has moved to the forefront of the debate about sustainable development and the appropriate roles of the public and private sectors in delivery of essential services. Water is the world’s third largest industry after oil and electric power, and drinking water and sanitation utilities are the most capital intensive of all utilities and the most essential. Growing freshwater scarcity and increasing demand are giving rise to investment strategies based on water as an increasingly scarce commodity not unlike oil, with the prospect of ‘peak water’ summoning visions of peak profits from what is already being called ‘blue gold.’ Water funds are being marketed as ‘green’ and ‘sustainable’ but the question for responsible investors is: How green are they? To answer this question, ICCR surveyed twelve drinking water and sanitation utilities to assess their disclosure of significant environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance data. The findings are presented in Liquid Assets: Responsible Investment in Water Services.
Liquid Assets: Responsible Investment in Water Services