The Netherlands-based body will be joining the organization to quantify and manage the sailing team’s direct and indirect water use until the end of The Ocean Race 2022-23. 11th Hour Racing Team will work with Water Footprint Implementation to track water usage, reduce consumption, and compensate for the unavoidable remaining footprint from the campaign.
A ‘water footprint’ isn’t simply the amount of water that comes out of a tap. Every product and service used takes water to make or provide – whether that’s materials for the boat build, the sailors’ clothing or the equipment taken onboard for each race. This is known as ‘embedded water’ and accounts for the indirect water use. When products are traded across borders, there is also a ‘virtual water’ trade taking place. By monitoring the team’s use of this finite resource they can learn where the water is coming from and how it may be impacting these often distant regions, allowing conscious choices when purchasing goods.
In an ambitious endeavor to ensure accuracy in the data, the Team’s goal is to include embedded water consumption, as well as direct water consumption, in their overall footprint calculations.
“Partnering with Water Footprint Implementation is step one of many as we seek to minimize our water footprint, and aspire to run a net positive campaign across all our sectors of operation and influence – having a regenerative impact on our environment,” explained Damian Foxall, 11th Hour Racing Team’s Sustainability Program Manager. “Their expertise will enable us to fully assess our campaign’s impact, allowing us to build an effective strategy to mitigate our water use and optimize opportunities for making considered choices when purchasing our goods and supplies. It’s important that we understand, and take responsibility for, our impacts in any given sector – only then can we begin to make powerful and constructive changes that will improve the health of our planet.”
According to the World Wildlife Fund, if global water consumption continues at the current level, two-thirds of the world’s population could be affected by water scarcity by 2025. In order to better understand issues like water shortages and pollution, Water Footprint Implementation examines production and supply chains as a whole, helping governments and organizations reduce their impact on water sources.