Alliance for Water Stewardship Releases International Standard

To Drive Sustainable Freshwater Use


AWSlogoWater is a shared resource critical for human health, driving the economy, and maintaining freshwater species. Yet due to a myriad of factors, including growing demand, climate change and pollution, freshwater in many regions is increasingly at risk.

The Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS), a partnership of global leaders in sustainable water management, aims to reduce that risk. On April 8, the multi-stakeholder group released the International Water Stewardship Standard version 1.0, the first global framework to promote sustainable freshwater use. By focusing on targets in water governance, water balance, water quality and other important water-related areas, the Standard will help water-users understand the value of water, mitigate their water risks, and earn recognition for responsible water stewardship. It clearly defines criteria for good water stewardship and was designed to align with other sustainability initiatives and support independent certification with varying levels of recognition.

The AWS Standard (version 1.0) can now be implemented to help to mitigate water risk and demonstrate action to address shared water challenges.

  • The AWS Standard provides a roadmap to follow towards sustainable water use and guides actions that mitigate water risks. It enables sites to improve their operations, as well as address shared water challenges in their catchments through actions on water governance, water consumption, water quality and water-related areas of importance.
  • The AWS Standard defines globally applicable, consistent criteria for responsible water stewardship, and is designed to support public sector agencies, align with other sustainability initiatives.
  • The AWS Standard will be supported by a verification program, to be completed in 2014, with varying levels of recognition and offering assurance for investors, owners and purchasers. AWS encourages sites to begin implementing today.

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