Coca-Cola, WWF Extend Partnership to Fresh Water

The Coca-Cola Company, in partnership with World Wildlife Fund (WWF), on Oct. 30 announced ambitious new targets to improve water efficiency and reduce carbon emissions within its systemwide operations, while promoting sustainable agricultural practices and helping to conserve the world's most important freshwater basins.

The partnership, announced by WWF and The Coca-Cola Company in 2007 with $20 million in funding, has now been extended an additional two years (through 2012) with the company providing $3.75 million in new funding.

The Coca-Cola Company also joined WWF's Climate Savers program in which leading corporations from around the world work with WWF to dramatically reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. By 2010, Climate Savers companies will collectively cut carbon emissions by 14 million tons annually -- the equivalent to taking more than 3 million cars off the road each year.

The Coca-Cola system will improve its water efficiency 20 percent by 2012, compared to a baseline year 2004. While water use is expected to increase as the business grows, this water efficiency target will eliminate approximately 50 billion liters of that increase in 2012.

To support this efficiency target, The Coca-Cola Company and WWF have developed a Water Efficiency Toolkit to help reduce water consumption within bottling plants. This software-based instruction manual has been distributed to managers and operators throughout the Coca-Cola system, providing strategies to shrink the water footprint of their operations.

The company has set two emissions reduction targets:

•grow the business, not the carbon systemwide and

•a 5 percent absolute reduction in Annex 1 (developed) countries.

The emissions targets apply to manufacturing operations in the year 2015 compared to a baseline year of 2004.

The Coca-Cola Company also will work with WWF to promote more sustainable agricultural practices in an effort to reduce the impact of its supply chain on water resources. This work will initially focus on sugarcane production. The two are working with the Better Sugarcane Initiative to establish standards, evaluate suppliers, and set goals for the purchase of sugar. The Coca-Cola Company will identify two additional commodities on which to work in 2009.

The partners are working together to conserve some of the world's most important freshwater resources, including the Yangtze, Mekong, Danube, Rio Grande/Rio Bravo, Lakes Niassa and Chiuta, the Mesoamerican Reef catchments, and the rivers and streams in the southeastern region of the United States. More than a dozen production plants and/or bottlers in the areas surrounding these rivers are developing and implementing water stewardship plans to serve as models throughout the Coca-Cola system.

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