Twenty-six water utility companies across the globe have pledged, through the Race to Zero campaign, to half global carbon emissions by 2030 and reach net-zero by 2050.
The Race to Zero campaign, led by the UN’s High-Level Climate Champions for Climate Action, brings together non-state actors – companies, cities, regions, financial and educational institutions – to take immediate action to eventually reach a zero-carbon world.
The water sector plays a vital role in the success of the campaign with global water use, storage, and distribution accounting for 10% of all global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions worldwide.
Water UK has been an official partner of Race To Zero since January 2021, helping to encourage water utilities across the globe to join the initiative ahead of the COP26 summit.
Christine McGourty, CEO of Water UK, added: “We could not be prouder to be playing our part in COP and to be working with our partners to drive forward progress on net-zero.
“We’re facing a critical decade for the environment that will require collaboration on a global scale as we work to build long-term plans that deliver for people and planet. By investing early in sustainable water solutions, countries and utilities have an important opportunity to deliver programmes that will be cost-effective for both the sector and the consumer, and we don’t have time to waste.
“We look forward to sharing key insights with climate leaders from around the world and working together to get the right frameworks in place to deliver net zero.”
The UK’s water sector, consisting of nine major water and sewerage providers, including Yorkshire Water, Anglian Water and United Utilities, has drafted a roadmap for achieving net zero by 2030.
The roadmap outlines specific commitments aimed at reaching this goal including solar installations, electric vehicles and biomethane production.
“This Routemap is a crucial step forward in setting out the industry’s vision for tackling climate change as we work towards a green and resilient recovery for society, the economy and the environment.” added Christine McGourty.
“We don’t have all the answers, and we can’t do it alone. But with the support of government, regulators and the supply chain, we believe we can deliver a net-zero water supply for customers that also helps build the green skills and solutions needed to protect the environment for generations to come.”