The Value of Water Book Project provided 30 copies of the Value of Water: A Compendium of Essays by Smart CEOs to the speakers who are leading authorities on water and sanitation issues at The Economist 2014 World Water Summit.
Leader Thinkers in Water and Sanitation Stress “Time for Action” at Global Summit
On Thursday, November 6, Donna attended The Economist’s 2014 World Water Summit, where the world’s leading thinkers on water policy, management, irrigation, technology, economic development, sanitation and hygiene and water-related risks gathered in London to catalyze action in response to the looming global water crisis.
It was the perfect venue to share The Value of Water Book to leaders from the private sector, government, academia, and associations who appreciate the value of water and in their presentations focused on:
- Pushing progress for water and sanitation to a new level
- Stimulating private sector involvement and smart partnerships, and
- Raising the profile of and activity supporting water stewardship across all sectors of society.
John Parker, who writes on global trends in the environment for The Economist, moderated the summit, which was held in London’s The Crystal, a world-class LEED and BREEAM-accredited building and home to the sustainable cities initiative by Siemen‘s exploring how sustainable technologies can shape the future of cities.
Prince Charles Suggests Enlightened Water Diplomacy
The event kicked off with a video message by Prince Charles, who reminded attendees about the importance of sustainable water management, accepting responsibility for and properly managing water, and measuring what matters. He stressed that the sector should move toward “enlightened water diplomacy” and “fair pricing regimes.” He also noted that we must understand that because water lies at the heart of increasing population, energy use, and demands on food, it is “not a simple equation to balance.”
UN Deputy Secretary-General and Water as a Source of Cooperation
Jan Eliasson, UN deputy secretary-general and keynote speaker for the Summit, shared details of the changing and more dangerous global water landscape: surges in water-related crisis, mounting demographic and unsustainable economic pressures affecting water quality and quantity, and a world where sanitation for all is still a major challenge. Eliasson noted that tensions over water and lack of access to water are escalating, fuel conflict, and threaten peace and security.
“Degraded access to water as a result of climate change, or population pressures, risks creating social tensions, political instability and intensified refugee flows. Even more disturbing is when we see this resource used as a weapon of war,” he said.
He added that the potential for shared management of water as a means to achieve regional cooperation and conflict prevention is vital and recommended that the sector step-up efforts in hydro-diplomacy and use water as a source of cooperation rather than as a source of conflict.
Advancing Corporate Water Stewardship
In a special appeal to the private sector, deputy secretary-general Eliasson requested that firms actively engage with the United Nations Global Compact to “advance corporate water stewardship and better sanitation practices” and contribute to efficient water use, water treatment and desalination. Other specific action items he mentioned included:
- Smarter, integrated water management approaches
- Better waste-management
- Use of technology for desalination of blue water
- Global partnerships
- Mobilization of action
- Support on the ground
- National and international cooperation
- No policy silos
- New incentives and fiscal instruments
- Smart investments
Must Not Saddle Future Generations with Our Problems
Eliasson closed his presentation by saying: “We need leadership in the spirit of engaged and compassionate national and global citizenship. Let there be no more deferring of difficult decisions. We must not saddle future generations with problems we can solve today.”
About The Economist Events
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WASHINGTON, October 8, 2014 — “The Value of Water: A Compendium of Essays by Smart CEOs,” available on Amazon, other online retailers, and the Value of Water book website, will debut internationally at the Frankfurt Book Fair October 8-12.
The Frankfurt Book Fair is the world’s largest international fair for books and content. Last year, it attracted 7,275 exhibitors from 102 nations, 631 literary agents, and approximately 9,400 journalists.
This new book, by noted water sector communication expert Donna Vincent Roa, PhD, documents views of CEOs and the most senior leaders of water utilities and associations on the value of water.
“The thoughtful and provocative CEO essays probe complex issues and provide a unique look inside the world of water,” Roa said. “The book addresses how we can educate the public on the critical role of water infrastructure and the value of water, the role of technology and innovation, the water ‘utility of the future,’ and a range of topics that will allow readers to rethink how they use water in their daily business and personal lives.”
“The Value of Water” book features 40 essays from industry leading U.S. organizations, including American Water, DC Water, GE Power & Water, Kohler, Hillsborough County Public Utilities Department, National Association of Water Companies, Xylem Inc., and United Water, among many others. The essays inform the conversation about water’s future and show that the “business as usual” approach to our limited water resources needs to change. They also demonstrate how water can pose a threat to economic growth, reputation, and profit margins, in addition to creating value and business opportunities.
The project was originated and executive produced by Roa in collaboration with the Value of Water Coalition.
About the Value of Water Coalition
The Value of Water Coalition includes key public and private sector leaders from the U.S. world of water. We aim to educate the public on the importance of clean, safe, and reliable water to and from every home and community, and to help ensure quality water service for future generations.
About Vincent Roa Group, LLC
Vincent Roa Group, LLC helps clients achieve excellence in high-stakes communication and position brand communication as a key enterprise asset. CEOs, corporate rainmakers, and water utility leaders call on Vincent Roa Group to evaluate processes, perspectives, and performance in order to align communication with their business strategies. The firm delivers “communication to improve the earth and its people™” and specializes in water, environment, sustainability, and public health.