Dubai, January 2018 –The Coca-Cola Company announced that it has returned 1.75 billion litres of water to nature and communities across the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region in 2017. This achievement represents a critical contribution to Coca-Cola’s global goal to replenish 100 percent of the water it uses by 2020 – as the MENA region is the most water-stressed region in the world.
“We know that water scarcity is an acute problem in the MENA region. Coca-Cola is committed to playing our part by replenishing the water we use through initiatives across the MENA region that give people access to safe water, water for agriculture, and that protect watersheds. We’re proud of our progress so far but there’s more to do” said Kathryn Casson, Director for Public Affairs, Communication and Sustainability in the Middle East and North Africa, The Coca-Cola Company.
Coca Cola’s Replenish goal, a first for the beverage-producing private sector, seeks to replenish, or return through water access, productive use and conservation activities, 100 percent of the water Coca-Cola uses in its global sales volume by 2020. To achieve this, Coca-Cola System entities support community-based water projects around the world, with a specific focus on water stressed regions and those locations experiencing or recovering from humanitarian crises.
These projects vary in design and scale, but all operate to either provide people with access to sustainable water and sanitation services, provide water for productive use such as irrigation, or protect environments and natural water sources from degradation and depletion. To date, Coca-Cola and its philanthropic Foundations have implemented over 25 replenishment projects throughout the MENA region. Some key projects include:
- Iraq: The Coca-Cola Foundation, through its New World Program (NWP) partnered with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to conduct emergency repairs to water networks and provide sustainable water for rural areas of Iraq through the use of water pumps.
- Jordan: The Coca-Cola Foundation partnered with Al Ma’Wa for Nature and Wildlife to provide improved household water infrastructure networks for local communities without access to piped water.
- Lebanon: The Coca-Cola Foundation partnered with G Association to create a “water wise village” by providing improved irrigation infrastructure to increase water resource management and installing water saving technologies in households.
- Palestine: The Coca-Cola Foundation partnered with Palestine Hydrology Group to provide greywater treatment in restricted/border areas of the Gaza Strip, enabling increased irrigation where access to water can be problematic.
- Egypt: The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation, through its Replenish Africa Initiative (RAIN), partnered with CARE to extend the coverage of safe water and adequate sanitation access to households in rural upper Egypt, which were previously unserved by these services. 55,000 people received access to clean water in Egypt through Coca-Cola’s efforts.
- Morocco: The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation combatted desertification in Tata Province by partnering with L’ALCESDAM, an organization that introduced efficient irrigation systems to restore an oasis. The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation also partnered with CARE in Morocco to increase access to improved potable water supply sources and sanitation facilities for vulnerable rural populations.
- Pakistan: The Coca-Cola Company partnered with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to launch Paani, a Safe Water Initiative, that provides clean water to people across Pakistan through community outreach and infrastructure building.
Building on this impact, Coca-Cola in MENA plans to launch new projects in Iraq, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Pakistan, Algeria, Morocco in 2018 and will expand its replenish work to reach Sudan for the first time, bolstering drought and humanitarian response efforts. Globally, Coca-Cola and its Foundations are currently contributing to nearly 250 community water projects in almost 2,000 communities across more than 70 countries.
Replenish is only one element of the Company’s overall water stewardship framework, which also includes Source Water Protection; efforts to reduce water consumption in bottling plants as measured by the Water-Use-Ratio (WUR); and Waste-Water treatment activities, which clean waste water to a standard that can support aquatic life before it leaves a bottling plant. All of these efforts aim to balance Coca-Cola’s impact on finite water sources, in recognition of growing population and climate change related pressures on the long-term availability of water around the world.
About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world’s largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands and nearly 3,900 beverage choices. Led by Coca-Cola, one of the world’s most valuable and recognizable brands, our company’s portfolio features 21 billion-dollar brands, 19 of which are available in reduced-, low- or no-calorie options. These brands include Diet Coke, Coca-Cola Zero, Fanta, Sprite, Dasani, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Del Valle, Georgia and Gold Peak. Through the world’s largest beverage distribution system, we are the No. 1 provider of both sparkling and still beverages. More than 1.9 billion servings of our beverages are enjoyed by consumers in more than 200 countries each day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world’s top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system associates. For more information, visit Coca-Cola Journey at www.coca-colacompany.com, follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/CocaColaCo, visit our blog, Coca-Cola Unbottled, at www.coca-colablog.com or find us on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/the-coca-cola-company.