Water management


We recognise access to safe and clean water and sanitation as a human right. Water is a shared and finite resource. We aim to preserve water sources, protect the waterways we use and support access to high-quality water.

Why this matters

Through good water management, we minimise our impact on water resources – for the benefit of local water users and ourselves. 

By improving our water efficiency, we reduce our impact on local water supplies, especially in areas where supply is under stress. 

Our approach

We seek to understand our impact on the environment – using what we learn to minimise our impacts on water sources and the shared use of water.

To achieve this, we work with local water users, host communities and governments.

Through our Group water strategy, we aim to:

  1. Identify and assess our material water impacts, risks and opportunities
  2. Improve our understanding of our water footprint
  3. Develop and implement water management plans covering each of our assets' lifecycles – to avoid, minimise or mitigate the impacts and risks
  4. Improve our water management performance, including identifying and setting water-related targets
  5. Ongoing engagement with significant stakeholders, and public reporting on our progress.



To minimise any potential water-related impacts from our operations and provide fair and equitable access for all water users.

Investing in community water schemes

Through investment in water-related programmes such as wells or filtration plants, we help communities gain access to high-quality water.

We recognise access to water as a fundamental human right.
It is essential to our operating processes and we support equitable access to water through working with all our regional water users.

Ivan Glasenberg, CEO

Managing water-related risks

Through effective risk management, we help maintain the quantity and quality of the water bodies we use and preserve waterways we use for transporting commodities. Our water-related risk management ensures an adequate identification and mitigation of potential risks.

How we manage water in Ulan, Australia

Our water balance

We constantly seek to improve our understanding of our water footprint; this underpins our water management strategy. 

We are working to enhance the “water balance” at our assets – that is, the water we consume, the amount we withdraw from various sources, and where it goes – to support improvements in our monitoring, reporting and water management.

Principles we follow

UN Global Compact - Principles 7, 8 and 9

Principle 7: Businesses should support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges

Principle 8: Businesses should undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility

Principle 9: Business should encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies

UN Sustainable Development Goals - Goals 6, 12, 14 and 15

Goal 6: Ensure access to water and sanitation for all

Goal 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources

Goal 15: Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss

International Council on Mining and Metals - Principle 6

Principle 6: Pursue continual improvement in environmental performance issues, such as water stewardship, energy use and climate change


We participate in the CDP water programme.