The industry is a key part in the development of solutions to ensure water security

The Brazilian industry is using water in an increasingly efficient way in the production processes, investing in water recirculation, adaptive catchment systems, and in the use of treated effluents from domestic wastewater (reuse).

Concurrently, the sector has been directing its innovations toward the development of household appliances, cleaning products, sanitary utensils, and other consumer goods that allow the consumer to use water in a rational way.

In the global context, the scarcity and the low quality of water already affect the daily life of the industry and inhibit investments, and thus the water risk has been increasingly relevant in the business strategy of various industrial sectors. Over the past six years, the World Economic Forum's risk reports have listed water-related risks among the top five global threats.

Brazil, despite having the largest water reserve on the planet, has the challenge of balancing the relationship between supply and demand, since most of the population lives in regions with low availability of the resource, and of overcoming the bottleneck of lack of basic sanitation coverage.

It is strategic for the country to invest in collaborative solutions in water management that allow us to supply cities, generate energy, produce food, and develop the industrial sector, without compromising environmental resources and sensitive ecosystems.

The transformations required to overcome the challenge of sustainable development depend on public and private investments, and on collaborative action among the different players involved in the management of Brazil's water resources.

The goal is to ensure water security across all its dimensions:  meeting the basic needs of humans and animals; economic production and development; disaster risk protection and prevention; ecosystem protection; and geopolitical stability.

The demand for water use in Brazil is growing, with an estimated increase of approximately 80% in total water withdrawals over the last two decades. Water withdrawals are expected to increase by 23% until 2030. The history of the evolution of water use is directly related to the economic development and urbanization process in the country.

With regard to the manufacturing industry in the country, the greatest concentration is in the Southeast and South regions, especially in the municipality of Paranapanema, in the state of São Paulo.

The region has more than 20,000 industrial establishments in 99 segments, with the four main sectors, in terms of water use, being sugar-energy, pulp and paper, slaughtering and meat products, in addition to alcoholic beverages.

Key messages

Achieving water security depends on collaboration between businesses, governments, civil society organizations, and other stakeholders.

It is essential to generate and make available quality information about water and its uses, considering environmental, social, and economic aspects.

The use of treated effluents from domestic wastewater (reuse) by the industry contributes to the conservation of water sources and the reduction of costs for companies, and can become an important alternative source of water for increasing water security in the sector.

Studies and analyses

CNI is the main organization representing Brazilian industry. Its challenge is to increase the competitiveness of Brazilian industry by influencing the policy environment. To this end, it engages in policy dialogue with Congress, the federal government and the judiciary.


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