Upgraded WWF Water Risk Filter 6.0 will help companies and investors to tackle worsening water risks in a changing climate

Posted on 24 November 2021

Water Risk Filter upgrade supported by UK Development Bank CDC Group
With COP26 underlining the need for urgent action by corporates to respond to the climate-water crisis, WWF today launched the most substantial upgrade to its leading tool for companies and investors – WWF Water Risk Filter 6.0.

Enhanced with the support of CDC Plus – CDC’s technical assistance facility funded by UK Aid from the British people – the WWF Water Risk Filter version 6.0 will enable companies and investors to better assess and respond to water risks, ranging from increasing scarcity to extreme floods to growing social conflict and weak regulations. With these risks all being exacerbated by climate change, a WWF analysis found that almost half of global GDP will potentially come from high water risk areas by 2050.

“We have upgraded the WWF Water Risk Filter to keep pace with the changing environment and provide enhanced support for companies and investors to take meaningful action,” said Ariane Laporte-Bisquit, WWF Water Risk Filter Project Manager. “With climate change intensifying water risks across the world, businesses face being left with drying or drowning assets. The WWF Water Risk Filter 6.0 will help companies and investors to tackle these risks and build resilience.”

As a corporate and portfolio-level screening tool, the WWF Water Risk Filter 6.0 enables users to prioritize action on what and where it matters the most to address their water risks as well as collectively build resilience in key river basins in which they operate and depend on.

Along with the website’s new look, the most important upgrades to version 6.0 include:
  • Unique climate and socioeconomic-based scenarios to assess future water risks
  • First ever high-resolution dataset for Europe, along with best available global datasets
  • Improved interface to manage user data and visualize risk assessment results
Nikolas Stone, ESG-Impact Director at CDC Group, said “CDC is excited for the launch of the upgraded Water Risk Filter 6.0 which will help drive action amongst investors and companies on climate-water risk. We look forward to assess CDC’s portfolio using the enhanced tool to build resilience across our portfolio and throughout our markets.”

With its first version co-developed and launched in 2012, in partnership with the German Development Finance Institution DEG, the WWF Water Risk Filter was one of the first online water risk assessment tools for companies and investors.

With its unique ability to combine state-of-the-art basin risk data with operational risk information, the Water Risk Filter has become a leading and trusted tool used by a range of sectors - including textile company H&M Group, retailers EDEKA and Migros, food and beverage companies Alpro and Carlsberg, pharmaceutical AstraZeneca, bio-technology company Novozymes, and many more.

What exactly is new with the WWF Water Risk Filter version 6.0?

Beyond the new look and feel of the website, here are the top three most exciting changes and improvements in version 6.0.
  1. Assessing future water risks under different scenarios: Climate and socioeconomic-based scenarios of water risks are now comprehensively integrated in the upgraded tool’s Assess section, thus enabling users to perform scenario risk analysis across their specific site(s), company(ies) and or group(s) of sites of interest - as recommended by the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). By better understanding how water risks may evolve over a 10- and 30-year time, companies and investors will be able to make better informed decisions on their corporate strategies and investments.

    "Recognizing the TCFD recommendations and importance of assessing and preparing for potential future water risks in a changing climate, Carlsberg was the first company to test and use the new WWF Water Risk Filter scenarios to understand how water risks across our breweries may evolve in 2030 and 2050 under different scenarios," said Simon Boas Hoffmeyer, Senior Director Sustainability at Carlsberg Group.
  2. New high-resolution dataset for Europe and updated global dataset: The global dataset in the Water Risk Filter 6.0 is updated to provide latest best available data for assessing water risks worldwide. Whilst already containing local datasets for Mekong region and seven countries (Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Great Britain, Hungary, South Africa, and Spain), the upgraded tool now incorporates a new high-resolution dataset for Europe to conduct finer-scale assessment of water risks, which draws on different datasets including data from the Copernicus Climate Change Service, the European Environment Agency and its  Water Framework Directive Database.

    “With over 80% of Mondi’s pulp and paper operations in Europe, Mondi sponsored the development of high-resolution risk data at the European level within the WWF Water Risk Filter 6.0 to help companies gain more detailed understanding of water risks across Europe,” said Christian Ramaseder, Group Environmental Manager at Mondi Group.
  1. Improved interface to manage user data and visualize results for identifying water risks across different companies and value chain components:  With the new Portfolio and Sites Manager in version 6.0, users are now able to better organize and group their data in most relevant way to assess water risks across different companies as well as different parts of a company’s value chain. Furthermore, the version 6.0 now provides new graphical and map outputs to better visualize and more easily interpret risk assessment results.

    “With over 1,100 facilities within its production value chain operating in 24 countries, H&M Group assesses water risk across its supply chain using the WWF Water Risk Filter. The water risk assessment’s outputs were used to set contextual water targets for all our business partners, which enabled us to focus performance targets on most critical water-related challenges informed by basin and operational context” said Shariful Hoque, Global Water Responsible at H&M Group.
Companies and investors are under increasing pressure to act now on the rising tide of water risks in a changing climate.

The upgraded WWF Water Risk Filter 6.0 is a powerful tool to drive more effective and strategic action for a water-secure and climate resilient future.

Upcoming Webinar
Want to learn more? Join WWF’s open webinar on 7th December 2021 at 16:00 CET to discover key highlights of the upgraded WWF Water Risk Filter 6.0. You can register HERE for this webinar.
Global map on the enhanced WWF Water Risk Filter 6.0
© WWF Water Risk Filter
Extreme floods
High res map of Europe on WWF Water Risk Filter
© WWF Water Risk Filter