STRENGTHENING GLOBAL AND REGIONAL STRATEGIC FOCUS
Both Water Stewardship Australia (WSA) and the international Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) have been reviewing their strategies over the past two months. AWS will focus on building participation and ownership of the AWS water stewardship system while maintaining the credibility of the system. This translates into three key goals: (1) The AWS system is robust and credible. It enables, recognises and rewards good water stewardship; (2) AWS water stewardship is a globally recognised brand that attracts participants and drives participation; (3) AWS has the financial capacity and people capability to deliver Goals 1 & 2 and build global participation. WSA will focus on being highly valued for providing a collaborative way for businesses, governments and communities to define and deliver great water stewardship outcomes in Australia and the Indo-Pacific region; it will ensure that locally relevant water stewardship outcomes are embedded in the AWS international water stewardship system, and supporting delivery and implementation of water stewardship in the region. Further information is being prepared for both AWS and WSA members.
JOINT MEMBERSHIP OF AWS AND WSA
WSA is preparing to offer joint membership of both WSA and AWS. Members of WSA will be offered AWS membership at a significantly discounted rate. Details will be posted shortly but organisations interested in joint membership should contact WSA on firstname.lastname@example.org. Members of WSA/AWS will have the privileges of membership of both organisations and, for example, be invited to participate in the first AWS International Members Forum scheduled for November in Edinburgh, Scotland.
TRAINING PROGRAM SCHEDULED FOR ADELAIDE
WSA has scheduled a three-day training program for Adelaide on the 4th - 6th of April. The program will offer three levels of training; Foundation, Advanced and Specialist. Foundation Training is an introductory program designed to enable participants to start on their water stewardship journey. Advanced Training offers a more detailed program for people working in organisations implementing a water stewardship program or people wanting to offer AWS accredited services. The third day, Specialist Training, is specifically for people interested in offering services as an auditor, consultant or trainer. It includes working with AWS accreditation and certification standards as well as the AWS International Water Stewardship Standard. For more information see our website and to reserve your place in the course please contact Megan on email@example.com.
RIVERLAND WATER PRODUCTIVITY CLUSTER – FOCUS ON BUSINESS BENEFITS
Demonstrating the business benefits of good water stewardship is an important focus for the water stewardship trial being undertaken with the Renmark Irrigation Trust. The trust includes about 600 irrigators producing grapes, citrus, stone fruit, almond and other crops. A trial group of 10 irrigators will participate. As well as achieving the stated outcomes of the water stewardship system – sustainable water balance, good water quality, healthy ecosystems and cultural places and good water governance – the trial is hoping to demonstrate that water stewardship businesses are good business. In this context, good businesses have a lower water risk exposure, stronger brand and improved efficiency that delivers demonstrable outcomes at the bottom line. It is a challenging project as often the business benefits of social and environmental programs are difficult to measure. Other collaborators in the project are WSA member the National Australia Bank, the Goyder Institute, Waterfind and the South Australian Murray Darling Basin Natural Resources Management Board. The driver for the project is to enhance community resilience in the Riverland.
IN THE NEWS
A new report suggests the areas of the globe suffering serious water stress are much more extensive that previously thought. Researchers at the University of Twente found that four billion people or two thirds of the world’s population face water shortages for at least one month every year. The report based on a study dividing the world into 2,000 square kilometre grids was published in the journal Science Advances and reported in the New York Times. This report follows release of the 11th Edition of the World Global Risks Report. Risk of water crisis remains one of the greatest risks sitting near failure of climate change mitigation and adaptation and large-scale involuntary migration.