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WFI launches Water Footprint Compensation during UN Water Conference

24 March, New York, USA

To fast-track our goal of making fair and smart use of the world’s fresh water, Water Footprint Implementation is helping companies take their next big step by introducing the ground-breaking Water Footprint Compensation Concept.

During an official side-event of the United Nations 2023 Water Conference, the second of its kind after 47 years, WFI launched the draft methodology for compensation and gave the audience an early look into the digital platform for water footprint compensation projects developed with partner Akvo Foundation.

Water  Footprint Compensation implies that a water user can mitigate the negative impacts of their water consumption by taking action to replenish, restore or protect the water system from which the water was abstracted. Compensating for a water footprint means the water user has first measured and assessed the impacts of both their direct (operational) and indirect (supply chain) water consumption and goes beyond direct operations to redress the impact on water quantity and quality where the largest share of their water footprint lies: in the supply chain.

Water Footprint Implementation - avoid-reduce-reuse-compensate

Jaap Feil, co-founder of WFI said, “In 2003, Professor Arjen Hoekstra made a breakthrough in the water sector by introducing the Water Footprint Concept, a new way of looking at our water consumption. We continue his visionary work by developing and launching the next step in his Water Footprint story: Compensation. In practical terms, we can now complement our water footprint analyses with positive impact on the ground through Compensation Projects.”

WFI together with partners 11th Hour Racing Team, BlueDeal Netherlands, IGRAC and Wetskills Foundation signed a Commitment for the UN Water Action Agenda to continue the development and global roll-out of the Water Footprint Compensation concept. In addition to the parties present, the commitment has now been signed online by several other organizations. The commitment can be found on

Next steps will see the launch of the digital platform for compensation projects during the summer and a call for participation in the Technical Working Group for the further development of the compensation methodology.

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