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Water

Water is essential – for the communities in which we operate, for the natural world, and for our business. Managing this precious resource wisely is a high environmental priority.

Our approach

Water is our most important ingredient, but is also a precious shared resource which is coming under increasing pressure in many parts of the world. It is essential to our production processes and used widely throughout our supply chain, especially for the crops grown for our ingredients; and it is vital to the ecosystems, local economies, and communities in which we work.

While water is necessary everywhere, water supplies are under more stress in some places than in others. We are committed to improving the water efficiency of our operations around the world, but place particular emphasis on stewardship at our production sites in water-stressed1 areas (see map below). Around 30% of our production takes place in these areas – often in regions where our business is growing. Stewardship in such areas requires a long-term view: for example, this year we commissioned a programme to analyse the impacts of climate change on water security and supply in East Africa over a 25‑year horizon, focusing in particular on Nairobi, Kenya, where three of our production sites are located.

Our Blueprint Water Framework is designed to tackle our approach to the global water crisis holistically, and is based on three main platforms: community involvement, collective action, and our operations. Increasingly, we are also looking at water use throughout our supply chain.

Our community involvement programme, Water of Life, is intended to increase access to clean water, principally in Africa, as described in the socio-economic development section of this report.

Collective action is essential to addressing the global water challenge, and we are signatories to the CEO Water Mandate. We recognise that, in general, water extraction is becoming unsustainable, and that freshwater withdrawals in key watersheds must be brought back into line with sustainable supply. We are committed to working with other businesses and stakeholders to address this and other challenges.

Our operations are the area over which we have greatest control. Our three operational targets reflect our commitment to best practice water stewardship: to use water more efficiently throughout our business, to improve the quality of the wastewater we discharge, and to minimise the water wasted in water-stressed1 sites.

  1. Diageo defines water-stressed sites as those locations that pose a higher risk for water insecurity now and/or into the future; the definition is based on an evaluation of physical or economic water scarcity as well as regulatory and social risk.
Diageo sites located in water-stressed1 areas

diageo_WaterStressMap_Africa_03_460x207

  1. Diageo defines water-stressed sites as those locations that pose a higher risk for water insecurity now and/or into the future; the definition is based on an evaluation of physical or economic water scarcity as well as regulatory and social risk.
Water use by year (1,000s m3)1, 2

water_use_by_year_new_300x234

  1. 2007 baseline data and data for each of the five years in the period ended 30 June 2012 have been restated in accordance with Diageo’s environmental reporting methodologies.
  2. In accordance with Diageo’s environmental reporting methodologies total water used excludes irrigation water for agricultural purposes on land under the operational control of the company.

+ Total water use for the year ended 30 June 2013 is covered by KPMG’s independent assurance report.

Total water efficiency by year (I/I)1, 2

total_water_efficiency_by_year_new_300x234

  1. 2007 baseline data and data for each of the five years in the period ended 30 June 2012 have been restated in accordance with Diageo’s environmental reporting methodologies.
  2. In accordance with Diageo’s environmental reporting methodologies total water used excludes irrigation water for agricultural purposes on land under the operational control of the company.

+ Total water use for the year ended 30 June 2013 is covered by KPMG’s independent assurance report.

Performance

This year, we reduced absolute water withdrawals by 4% or 994,000 cubic metres, improved water efficiency by 1.5%, and reduced the volume of water wasted in water-stressed locations by 7%. While the volume of wastewater discharge (measured as BOD Ktonnes) increased this year by 9.8% compared with 2012, projects we commissioned in Cameronbridge (Scotland), Douala (Cameroon), and other sites in Africa during the last quarter of 2013 will significantly reduce the polluting power of wastewater discharges in subsequent years.

We are proud of the progress made against our 2007 baseline even while our production has increased and we have been integrating acquired businesses which added over 6% to Diageo’s total water use.

Improving water efficiency worldwide

We aim to improve water efficiency across our operations by 30% by 2015. We are currently on schedule, having made improvements of 19.5% since 2007, with 1.5% improvements in the last year. We are confident that we will meet our 2015 target, although we know that efficiencies will become progressively harder to deliver.

We reduced the absolute volume of water we use by nearly 1 million cubic metres this year. These reductions come despite increases in our overall production volume, and in particular increases in distilling, which is the most water-intensive part of our production.

Our operations in Africa achieved their 2015 target of improving water efficiency by 30% this year – two years ahead of schedule. We are particularly proud of this milestone since water in Africa is such a critical resource. In Africa and elsewhere, we have improved the efficiency of our brewing operations through a combination of continuous improvement and operational efficiency projects which conserve and reuse water from packaging lines, vacuum pumps, and the brewing process.

For information about the impact our water use has on local sources, see the wider environment section.

Reducing water wasted in water-stressed areas

We have designated 12 of our production sites as water-stressed. In these sites, our goal is to reduce water wasted by 50% by 2015, compared to a 2007 baseline. Our progress this year – a 7% reduction, contributing to a 21% reduction against our 2007 baseline – is the result of a number of conservation measures and technology applications, including water recycling and reuse, in particular at our sites in the most water-stressed areas.

Water use by region by year (1,000s m3)1, 2
Region 2007 2011 2012 2013
North America 4,404 2,759 2,460 3,0533
Western Europe 11,291 9,470 9,186 8,961
Africa, Eastern Europe and Turkey 11,190 11,774 11,433 10,419
Latin America and Caribbean 1,354 871 774 542
Asia Pacific 660 586 503 399
Corporate 234 301 389 377
Diageo (total) 29,133 25,761 24,745 23,751+
  1. 2007 baseline data and data for each of the five years in the period ended 30 June 2012 have been restated in accordance with Diageo’s environmental reporting methodologies.
  2. In accordance with Diageo’s environmental reporting methodologies total water used excludes irrigation water for agricultural purposes on land under the operational control of the company.
  3. Increased water attributable to increased distillation to meet future demand for our products.

+ Total water use for the year ended 30 June 2013 is covered by KPMG’s independent assurance report.

Water efficiency by region by year (I/I)1, 2
Region 2007 2011 2012 2013
North America 6.7 5.5 5.0 6.53
Western Europe 7.6 6.7 6.6 6.6
Africa, Eastern Europe and Turkey 9.8 7.9 7.2 6.6
Latin America and Caribbean 14.2 11.4 10.6 9.1
Asia Pacific 4.4 4.4 3.5 3.3
Diageo (total) 8.2 7.1 6.7 6.6+
  1. 2007 baseline data and data for each of the five years in the period ended 30 June 2012 have been restated in accordance with Diageo’s environmental reporting methodologies.
  2. In accordance with Diageo’s environmental reporting methodologies total water used excludes irrigation water for agricultural purposes on land under the operational control of the company.
  3. Increased water attributable to increased distillation to meet future demand for our products.

+ Total water efficiency for the year ended June 2013 is covered by KPMG’s independent assurance report.

Total water withdrawn by source 2013 (1,000s m3)
Region Mains water1 Ground
(borehole/
well)
Surface water
(river/lake)
North America 1,362,720 660,203 1,030,195
Western Europe 3,842,927 4,164,256 953,532
Africa, Eastern Europe and Turkey 3,438,523 6,255,269 751,750
Latin America and Caribbean 0 541,964 0
Asia Pacific 325,877 59,269 14,151
Corporate 309,544 67,405 0
Diageo (total) 9,279,592 11,748,366 2,749,628
  1. Data includes 25,588m3 of water given to communities.

Reducing water pollution

By 2015 our target is to reduce the polluting power of wastewater from our operations (measured in biochemical oxygen demand or ‘BOD’) by 60% against a 2007 baseline. While the volume of wastewater discharge increased this year by 9.8% compared with 2012, there have been several encouraging developments which we believe will keep us on course to meet our 2015 target. At our Cameronbridge distillery in Scotland, which was responsible for 60% of our global BOD in 2012, BOD output fell by 12% in the last quarter of 2013, during the commissioning of our new bio‑energy plant, which you can read more about in our case study. A new effluent treatment plant, currently being commissioned at Douala in Cameroon, where we make Malta Guinness and other brands, is expected to reduce BOD by 90% in 2014.

In 2013, we also focused our efforts on monitoring wastewater BOD emitted directly into potentially sensitive water receptors, namely inland rivers, where wastewater pollution is less dispersed and where it may have greater environmental impacts on ecosystems or the availability of potable water. In the last year, wastewater BOD volumes emitted to inland rivers from our brewing sites in Africa were reduced by 25%, and overall BOD load was reduced by 29%, a result of sustained investment in effluent treatment plant expansion and upgrades.

Water discharge by quality and destination (2013)
The immediate receiving medium
after leaving Diageo site
As a % of total Diageo
effluent volume
% of the final BOD
to the environment
Lake 8 1
Third-party municipal 36 1
Land 1 0
River 31 15
Sea 24 83
Wetland 0 0
Diageo (total) 100 100
Waste water polluting power by region by year (BOD/kt)1
Region 2007 2011 2012 2013
North America 330 30 13 11
Western Europe 21,812 30,258 28,438 33,690
Africa, Eastern Europe and Turkey 11,593 11,003 8,458 6,795
Latin America and Caribbean 561 27 32 8
Asia Pacific 0 0 3 1
Corporate 1 3 1 1
Diageo (total) 34,297 41,321 36,945 40,506
Total under direct control 33,472 41,034 36,691 40,306+
  1. 2007 baseline data and data for each of the five years in the period ended 30 June 2012 have been restated in accordance with Diageo’s environmental reporting methodologies.

+ Total BOD under direct control for the year ended 30 June 2013 is covered by KPMG’s independent assurance report.

Reporting frameworks in this section

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