New Water Footprint Assessment Tool is Online


The Water Footprint Network redesigned and recently launched its online Water Footprint Assessment Tool, a free interactive tool that enables the development of exact insights and solutions for efficient water management, through the use of the latest global scientific data on water-related to commodities, crops, geographic areas, and water sources.

A water footprint is a measurement of water used to produce specific goods and services; it can also indicate how much water is being consumed in a country or region, or from a river basin or aquifer.

Smart responses

Response Formulation for optimal water use is a key feature in the geographic assessment function of the new tool. Different crops can be evaluated against geographical standards of water use. Data-based suggestions are then provided on best approaches, such as improved irrigation techniques, sector synergies, or use of different materials and structures. 

“The data in our tool is specific, actionable and understandable for water use and supply chains. It features much more than just a risk assessment, and can increase sustainability in water uses of companies, governments, environmental initiatives and more,” said Michiel van Heek, Developer in the Assessment Tool initiative.

World Water Day 2020 on 22 March highlights the linkage of water and climate change and is a key time to relaunch this tool. “A warming climate adds urgency to monitoring water use, as we’ll see larger water footprints across sectors. And as water use increases, our supply remains roughly the same, so use of smart approaches with our Assessment Tool facilitates more fair, sustainable and profitable practices for everyone,” said Dr. Rick Hogeboom, Executive Director of the Water Footprint Network.

Data in action

One click on the Water Footprint Assessment Tool opens 15 years of scientific data development on resources for uses including: 

1) farmers ensuring long-term yields, 

2) investors analysing and navigating risks 

3) companies planning sustainable business 

4) communities reducing environmental impact. 

“Water footprint assessment not only serves the direct interest of companies but aims at sustainable productivity in a broader perspective,” said Michiel van Heek, “With more data, we can increasingly benefit commercial operations, while leaving more water for others to use.”

Leadership in water assessment

The Water Footprint Network has teamed up with the expanding Water Footprint Implementation organization since 2017 to offer this best-in-class Assessment Tool. Updates in data and tool versions will continue to accommodate new developments in data and technology, and users from around the world will be able to contribute to the ongoing development of this online tool soon.

Examples of Water Footprint Assessment Tool applications:

Response Formulation: Cotton in India 

Sustainability: Hydrograph of the Orange Basin in South Africa


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