CDP announced its intention to launch the program in November.
Similar to the Carbon Disclosure Project that asks the world’s largest corporations to measure and disclose their greenhouse gas emissions and strategy for dealing with climate change, and the Forest Footprint Disclosure Project that requests corporations to disclose their activities and supply-chain practices that lead to tropical deforestation, C.D.P. Water Disclosure will ask companies to measure and disclose information on water.
That includes overall water use, as well as risks and opportunities in their own operations and supply chains as well as their water management and improvement plans.
Marcus Norton, head of the new project, told the New York Times that companies increasingly are discovering water-related obstacles in their operations ad supply chains.
On behalf of 137 international financial institutions, CDP sent an 11-page questionnaire to major corporations that are likely to use lots water, including those in auto manufacturing, mining, oil and gas production, electric utilities, food and beverages, and pharmaceuticals.
The survey asks companies to identify the amount of water they use in areas that are water-stressed.
The project also seeks to have corporations divulge their water use, recycling and discharges into waterways and wildlife areas.
The survey asks companies to identify water-related risks and opportunities in their operations, and whether they have a strategy or policy in place to address them.
Independently, a variety of companies are undertaking efforts to reduce their water use.
For instance, a new Hormel Foods plant consumes 25 percent less water than comparable facilities.
By 2015, ConAgra says it plans to cut its water use 15 percent per pound of product compared to 2008.