Procter & Gamble and the Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) North America have announced the approval of the Oxnard, California site as the first in the world AWS Self-Verified Site. This is the first site of any kind, manufacturing or otherwise, to become self-verified under the International Water Stewardship Standard (“AWS Standard”). Bounty and Charmin are 100% manufactured in the U.S. at locations like the Oxnard site.
The AWS Standard is a globally-applicable framework and management system for major water users to understand their water use, impacts and associated risks, and to work collaboratively and transparently towards sustainable water management within a catchment context. The Standard is intended to drive social, environmental and economic benefits at the scale of a catchment. It achieves this by engaging water-using sites in understanding and addressing shared catchment water challenges as well as site water risks and opportunities.
The Oxnard site is already known for its impressive water savings and water management strategy in a water-stressed region. P&G’s completion of the self-verification process at Oxnard was possible thanks to extensive collaboration by site, regional and central resources. Procter & Gamble worked closely with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and one of its suppliers, Fibria, to collect and share respective water management practices, challenges and solutions to move beyond compliance and water efficiency towards holistic water stewardship.
The AWS Standard was developed over a multi-year, global stakeholder informed process and counts WWF among its founding members. It is intended to help each site create customized plans that address internal and external water-related risks. The Oxnard site’s water conservation efforts exceed P&G’s corporate 2020 water reduction goals several years ago and shortly thereafter surpassed P&G 2030 goal; both are remarkable achievements.
“P&G has taken a public and concrete first-step on their journey to excellence in water stewardship performance. With their self-verification at this site, they are leading by example not only for other P&G facilities in North America, but for their peer companies in the consumer goods sector,” said Matt Howard, director of AWS North America.
“The application of the AWS Standard at Oxnard enabled P&G to better align its facility’s efforts to local watershed needs and forge new relationships with critical stakeholders, paving a path forward for watershed sustainability rooted in positive collaboration. We hope that others follow suit and apply this leading water stewardship framework to manufacturing facilities across North America,” said Lindsay Bass, manager of corporate water stewardship at WWF-US.
Manuel Ceja, Procter & Gamble’s Family Care Sustainability Leader, said “We are proud to be setting the standard for consumer goods companies and others by being the first to complete the AWS self-verification process. We’ve seen great benefits of going through the process, both in furthering the collaboration that we have with our partners, and helping us to achieve even greater reductions in water usage. We would encourage any other companies considering undertaking the self-verification to do it. “
Procter & Gamble is now conducting detailed site assessments based on the Standard at each of the 24 facilities facing the highest level of water risk.