Coca-Cola Pakistan has partnered with Pakistan Business Council’s Centre of Excellence in Responsible Business (CERB) to lead a dialogue on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal # 6 (SDG 6) - Clean Water & Sanitation, with focus on water efficiency – internal and external – as an integral part of corporate water policy. Pakistan is the third most affected country in the world by an acute water shortage, as ranked in an IMF study, and urgent measures are needed to mitigate the impending crisis of Pakistan having no water by year 2025, according to another study.
The said dialogue was held as a part of 5 workshop series throughout 2019-20. The second workshop of the series was held in Lahore on November 7 at Pearl Continental Hotel with over 24 participants from Engro Corp., Interloop, REON, PEL, Dawlance, Allads, Nova Consultants, WWF, Coca-Cola Icecek, Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) and Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS). The purpose of the interactive workshop was to draw attention to the need for everyone to work towards meeting SDG 6 targets, and help companies from various sectors identify the water risks in their supply chain, and to design and update their corporate water strategy.
First workshop was held in Karachi in August 2019 with over 40 participants from diverse backgrounds, representing academia, the media, industry, corporate sector and the non-profit sector. The vision behind these workshops is to gather targeted groups in each workshop and present them the corporate strategy of Coca-Cola and how sustainability is embedded across the Company’s value chain, making is still world’s leading beverage brand even after 133 years. With climate change, pressure on our natural reserves, economic downturn – corporates, societies and individuals are vulnerable to the most devastating changes in their environment. Therefore, it’s time for collective action in understanding effective, innovative yet sustainable solutions. Sharing of best practices is the first step towards that, and Coca-Cola is leading that vision in Pakistan too.
The Lahore workshop kicked off with CERB presenting types of risks associated with lack of attention towards the inclusion of SDG’s within a business strategy, then Coca-Cola presented its water replenishment strategy and the internal water efficiency strategy (across their production plants). External speakers from LUMS, Dr. Zehra Waheed, and Maheen Malik from AWS, shared details on the role of research and strategy allowing all stakeholders to have systems in place while pursuing water efficiency across their value chain.
Areeba Kirmani from Coca-Cola Icecek (CCI) presented CCI’s progress and vision in achieving high process efficiency across all their plants, with securing investment for 3 more Greenfields in the future. Atique Khawaja and Natasha Haroon from The Coca-Cola Export Corporation presented Coca-Cola’s vision to achieve Water positive status in Pakistan through strong partnerships and execution of a sustainability model across plant operations. One example is of Rahim Yar Khan plant where treated wastewater is reused and recycled for irrigation purposes at the nearby fields, generating replenish volume of over 156 million liters annually.
WWF was represented by Muhammad Waseem who’s led water stewardship projects in WWF since the early 90’s. Waseem emphasized over the importance of having water replenishment systems in place across communities and businesses as it takes years for one system to be internalized before the communities become self-sufficient.
To keep the workshop based on a Golden Triangle Apporach - where Government, NGOs and corporate comes together for a joint approach, Coca-Cola also invited Mr. Justice (Retd.) Ali Akbar Qureshi, Chairman of Water Commission to address the particpants about Water Commission's startegy on wate conservation and efficiency. This allowed participants to understand Water Commission's approach and vision, whilst also understanding the role of each stakeholder in formulating a cohesive strategy that can be excuted in Pakistan.
If you want to participate in the next workshop, please stay tuned on www.coca-colajourney.com.pk