Water – a vital shared resource
Water is essential to life and plays a spiritual, cultural, recreational, ecological and economic role in every landscape. This requires collaboration within a catchment between communities, government, business and civil society to responsibly meet water needs today while also safeguarding water supplies for future generations.
Towards water stewardship
Water stewardship is about using water in a socially equitable, environmentally sustainable, and economically beneficial way. Effective water stewardship requires collaboration and concerted action from all parties.
While water management has long been part of BHP’s governance, risk and operational management practices, increased pressure on water resources from population growth and climate change means we must do more – for the future of our business and the future of communities and the environments on which we all depend.
Water risk and governance
BHP is exposed to a broad spectrum of water-related risks because of the nature and location of our operations. Our diverse portfolio means we operate within a range of settings that influence the levels of water sensitivity and the nature of water-related risks for our assets.
We have core business processes, requirements and guidance materials that apply to our management of water at Group and operational levels.
BHP’s water performance
We interact with a diverse range of water sources including ground, surface and sea water. We use water in a variety of ways from processing our ore and controlling dust in our mining operations to cooling and enhanced product recovery in our petroleum operations. We also handle water in other ways such as diverting it around our operations during storm events.
We report on our water inputs, outputs and recycling/reuse and on progress against our public water targets and longer-term goal.