“We need to make wasting water as socially unacceptable as blowing smoke in the face of a baby”.
It might have been raining recently, but the warning yesterday from the Environment Agency Chief Executive, Sir James Bevan, could not have been clearer “unless we take action to change things, in around 20 to 25 years we will not have enough water to meet demand”.
Climate change is happening, meaning the UK will have hotter, drier summers reducing the water available from rivers. Meanwhile the UK population will rise, increasing the demand for water year-on-year.
Sir James’ advice on what needs to happen was equally clear. We need to address both the demand and the supply sides of the equation. We all need to work collaboratively, and to think and act differently.
He went on to praise the positive effect NGO and environmental groups have in challenging and lobbying others to reduce water abstraction and use, and in their role as partners in improving habitats and quality in local rivers.
Although much of the solution requires new thinking and a joined-up approach at national, regional or catchment level there is also a lot that can be done at a local level. Here are three ways to build a partnership that benefits your business, your community and the environment:
- Become Water Wise: understand your ‘water footprint’ and help your customer save water too. Use the knowledge of an environmental partner and look to where you can reduce water usage throughout your business and in the life cycle of the products that you make.
- Engage Your Teams: staff involvement can boost a partnership, creating more momentum and increasing motivation through volunteering and team days. Buddy up with a local river restoration group and help breath life back into the local waterways.
- Innovate Together: funding aside, innovation is often cited as one of the top reasons why NGOs and corporates engage in partnerships. Bringing the specific skills of each partner to bear can unlock new opportunities. Can you use these to help reduce your water usage or environmental impact?
Whether you are an NGO or a business, at Albright Special we are experts at helping you devise and implement a strategic approach to partnerships.
We can guide you through the selection, start-up and delivery processes that underpin the most effective partnerships, come rain or shine.