Nestlé Waters Calif. plants receive prestigious conservation certification
Nestlé Waters North America’s Sacramento and Livermore, Calif., factories have received certification for meeting the rigorous Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) Standard. Created by industry leaders and prominent environmental conservation groups such as The Nature Conservancy and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the AWS Standard is the first comprehensive global standard for measuring responsible water stewardship across social, environmental, and economic criteria, according to the company.
In the same vein as the LEED certification system – designed in 1993 by the U.S. Green Building Council to measure environmental design, construction, and maintenance standards in buildings – the AWS Standard sets global guidelines for efficient, collaborative and transparent water stewardship methods, from the source, to the plant, to the consumer.
Announcement of the AWS recognition comes as Nestlé Waters pledged to certify 20 of its bottling sites around the world to the AWS Standard by 2020 – the first beverage company in the world to make such a commitment – while urging others in the bottled water industry to also adopt this thorough sustainability standard. Of the nine facilities that have been certified to the AWS Standard globally, four are Nestlé Waters sites, including three in California.
Sacramento and Livermore are the second and third locations in the state – following Nestlé Waters' Ontario, Calif., factory – to receive certification, making significant progress toward the company's commitment to implement the AWS Standard at all five of its California water-bottling facilities by the end of 2017. Taken together, aligning with the AWS Standard at these three plants is projected to generate a combined savings of more than 20 million gallons of water by end of 2017. This is a result of a number of conservation techniques encouraged by the AWS Standard, including reverse osmosis, to better filter and reuse wastewater, advanced water mapping to more carefully manage the flow of water in and out of the plants and xeriscaping to reduce supplemental irrigation on the grounds of each factory, the company said.
California was selected as the first location for AWS certification because of the shared water challenges in the state, including the recent five-year drought. In certifying these sites, auditors looked at a number of factors within the groundwater basins where the plants are located, such as water quality, the availability of existing water sources and the health of water-related areas, such as marshes, in the region.
In addition to implementing the AWS Standard, Nestlé Waters has undertaken a number of community-based water conservation measures in California, including partnering with the Cucamonga Valley Water District in San Bernardino County to construct a groundwater treatment project expected to restore an additional 250 million gallons of clean drinking water each year to the local water supply.