In World Water Week ITP publishes its global Water Risk Assessment report

Sharm el Sheikh - Egypt shutterstock_56297083

Report reveals global at risk water regions

With World Water Week well under way, the International Tourism Partnership (ITP) hopes to contribute knowledge and prompt debate with the publication of a new report.

With a focus on the hotel industry, the report details water risk issues in key development areas - Rio de Janeiro, Beijing and Shanghai, India’s Golden Triangle and Dubai.

The study – the first of its kind – was conducted for ITP by the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) and provides an overview of how freshwater may become a constraint to the hotel industry in these regions in terms of maintaining current operations, as well as future growth. It highlights a range of potential impacts the industry could suffer due to shifts in the availability and quality of water resources and points out potential areas where additional costs can be expected. The assessment also suggests possible mitigation measures that can be taken to reduce negative impacts.

Headline findings include:

  • Dubai - excessive consumption of groundwater and increasing pressure on desalination facilities could lead to severe water shortages in the near future.
  • China - water shortages, increasing flood risk and pollution are to be anticipated, as well as possible price hikes due to increased costs of water treatment.
  • India’s Golden Triangle - over-extraction and climate change impacts risk limiting available fresh water resources. Emerging legislation is also expected to put increased demands on private sector water users.
  • Brazil - changed runoff patterns could cause bottlenecks in both energy and food supply affecting the hotel industry.

Freshwater is becoming a scarce resource in many parts of the world due to over consumption, pollution, climate change impacts and poor management. Reports warn that by 2030, demand for freshwater may outstrip supply by 40 per cent. With rising stress on water resources and the competing needs of businesses and communities, effective water resource management is crucial to a hotel’s ability and licence to operate.

Fran Hughes, Head of Programmes at ITP, says; “Whilst there is a lot of information available to hoteliers about water efficiency, what has been lacking are clear facts on water issues in specific areas. As such, it is sometimes hard to build the case for investment and action. We hope the findings of this report will help hoteliers to understand the local context where they operate and develop appropriate water management strategies. ITP’s water working group continues to collaborate to build a strong business case to hoteliers, owners and developers to implement future-proofed water strategies and move the industry from a position of simple water efficiency to true water stewardship.”

The report is available from the ITP website and you can download it here.

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Click here to download the report


World Water Week is hosted by SIWI and has been the annual focal point for the globe's water issues since 1991.

The conference provides a unique forum for the exchange of views, experiences and practices between the scientific, business, policy and civic communities. It focuses on new thinking and positive action toward water-related challenges and their impact on the world's environment, health, climate, economic and poverty reduction agendas

Each year the World Water Week addresses a particular theme to enable a deeper examination of a specific water-related topic. The 2013 theme is Water Cooperation - Building Partnerships.

For more information on the report and the ITP's work on Water or other sustainability issues contact ITP’s Head of Programmes Fran Hughes.


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