Water is essential for the use and production of our products. With growing urban populations, increasing demand on limited water supplies, and issues with water quality facing communities around the world, it is imperative that we work together to address the challenges facing this precious resource. At P&G we are doing our part to conserve and restore water for people and nature.

Reducing Water use during manufacturing

P&G has two overarching 2030 goals related to water use in our manufacturing facilities:

  • Increase water efficiency by 35% per unit of production vs. 2010 baseline
  • Source 5 billion liters of water from circular sources
Progress through June 30, 2021
  • 25%

  • 3.1 Billion Liters

As we advance progress vs. our goals, we seek to focus efforts on our facilities that are exposed to high water risk. P&G partnered with multiple organizations to develop a three-tier water risk assessment process that integrated water risk assessment tools from a number of sources. In just a few years, we assessed over 130 facilities and identified 24 P&G facilities located in areas exposed to high water risk – which we designate as “Tier 3” sites. Tier 3 sites are required to do an in-depth water use analysis and implement water stewardship action plans following the Alliance for Water Stewardship Standard 2.0. We periodically update our assessments to ensure water risk levels reflect current water risk data.

Water Risk Assessment Framework
The Three Facilities map

Some examples of site-specific work that has helped us drive progress on our water effort

Louveira, Brazil

This manufacturing plant, located in an area which has been experiencing water stress, developed innovative solutions to reduce freshwater use. The facility installed equipment to treat and reuse manufacturing process water effluent. Last year, the plant recycled more than 34 million liters of water, the equivalent annual water use of 860 Brazilian households. The project also inspired plant employees to implement other water sustainability measures.

Mariscala, Mexico

Our Mexico Hair Care plant is in an area which has been experiencing water stress. The employees are committed to reducing their use of fresh water and are leveraging innovative data analytics to drive actionable insights from water meters installed throughout the site. The analysis of this data provides the plant with a daily understanding of water consumption so they can act immediately to eliminate losses. The plant can also benchmark their water efficiency performance with other sites. In the first month of operation, the site identified five projects that can improve their production adjusted water efficiency by 10%.

Auburn, Maine

Our Feminine Care plant in Maine reduced its production adjusted water use by 18% in one year. The site conserved more than 12 million liters of water by fixing leaks and improving cooling tower operating systems. This water savings is equivalent to the annual water use of 150 Maine households. The plant continues to work on other ideas to reduce and reuse water.

Reducing Water Use in the Home

Global water consumption has increased twice as fast as population growth. And although agriculture and industry withdraw the majority of the world’s freshwater, more people are using more water in their homes than ever before. Domestic water demand grew 600% since 1960. This means that in-home water usage is increasing at the fastest rate, when compared to other sectors including agriculture and industry.

The overwhelming majority of our corporate water footprint is associated with the consumer use of our products in their homes. We are working to address this key impact area through:

Product Innovation

In 2019, we achieved our 2020 goal to provide one billion people with access to water-efficient products. Cascade, Tide, Downy, Swiffer, Pantene, H&S, Herbal Essences and others brought their innovative formulas to consumers all over the world to enable people to reduce in-home water use during everyday household activities. The end of the decade doesn’t mean the end of this important work, and our brands continue to look for opportunities to reduce in-home water use and communicate with consumers about ways they can help. A few examples of water efficient products are highlighted here.


The Waterl<ss brand was created to meet the needs of women who live under water scarcity conditions, leveraging Cape Town, South Africa, as an incubation market in 2019 and launching in North America in January 2020. The Waterl<ss brand lineup is designed to enable consumers to style their hair without the need of water. The collective Waterl<ss lineup qualifies as water efficient and is accessible to more than 16 million people in the U.S.

Swiffer Wet Pads

For decades, people have used the simple mop and bucket to keep their floors clean. In 2001, Swiffer Sweepers were released, and millions of consumers were introduced to a new, more-convenient way to clean. The Swiffer Wet system offers an all-around better experience. It’s easy to use and uses less water than the typical mop and bucket. Households went from using gallons of water to ounces of solution to clean their floors. Every household that uses Swiffer Wet could save more than 70 gallons of water per year vs. mop and bucket cleaners. About 50 million people in the United States currently have access to Swiffer Wet pads.

Cascade Platinum

In the U.S., Cascade Platinum Action Pacs clean stuck-on food in just one wash, with no prewash needed. This enables P&G to help consumers reduce their water use with every pot, plate or pan they put in the dishwasher. In fact, for each person who skips the prewash, up to 2,600 gallons of water can be saved in a household per year. Cascade is working hard to educate consumers about skipping the prewash when using this unit dose product so that everyone can start saving water while doing their dishes. Over 100 million U.S. consumers currently have access to this water-efficient product.

Consumer Education

Consumer habits and practices can significantly impact water use in the home. By helping consumers understand the simple actions they can take to reduce water use in the home, we can help make a big difference. For example, Cascade is addressing the issue of water scarcity through relevant consumer messaging. The “Do It Every Night” ad campaign is working to bust the myth that the dishwasher uses more water than handwashing dishes. By moving consumers towards using their EnergyStar® dishwasher to clean their dishes instead of handwashing dishes, there is great potential to reduce household water usage across millions of American homes.

photo of an elderly couple sitting on a green couch smiling

Collaboration: The 50L Home Coalition

It is predicted that by 2030, there will be a 40% gap between global water supply and demand. Pressure on water resources is growing, and some cities, like Cape Town, South Africa have already experienced Day Zero: a day when the city nearly ran out of water and the government required all four million residents to reduce their water use at home to 50L per person. Not only is water essential for the daily operation of our facilities and production, it is also an integral part of many of our products in the home.

Today, we know that the average home in the developed world is highly inefficient, using up to 500 liters of water per person each day. Showering, laundry, cooking and washing dishes in the home result in using upwards of 10% of the earth’s water supply. P&G is spearheading the 50L Home Coalition to bring partners together across the entire domestic water value chain, aiming to transform urban water management. The goal of the 50L Home project will be to leverage technologies and innovations that enable a person to live on 50 liters of water usage per day that feels like 500 liters. This effort will not only aim to save water but also energy used in the home. To learn more please go to: https://50lhome.org/

50L Home Reinvent our Water future

Conserving and Restoring Water in Priority Basins

Across the world, and even within countries, there is a diverse mix of landscapes, cultures, economies and climates that make water issues complex and require solutions unique to each river basin. That is why we embarked on a data-based water risk assessment with expert partners at World Resources Institute (WRI), World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Environmental Resources Management (ERM) to identify the areas of the world we should focus on for maximum positive impact. Using data from the WRI Aqueduct Water Risk Atlas and other sources, 18 priority basins across seven countries were identified as strategic for P&G based on our understanding of where our consumers, suppliers and facilities are most exposed to current and future water risks.

These priority basins meet four criteria:

  • Experiencing underlying chronic water stress (according to WRI Aqueduct)
  • Located within a relevant P&G market
  • At least one P&G manufacturing facility located there
  • At least one P&G supplier located in the area
Country # Priority Basins Priority Basin
China 3 Xuanhui He Hai He Delta Tuo Jiang
Mexico 3 Moctezuma Laja Lerma/Salamanca
USA 5 Lower Bear/Malad, Great Salt Lake, Lower American, Lower Sacramento/Putah, Calleguas
India 3 Sutlej
Yamuna 1
Saudi Arabia 2 Saudi Arabia West Coast 5 Persian Gulf Western Coast 2
Spain 1 Segura
Turkey 1 Kocaeli

Our intent is to learn more about each basin to determine the best scope and suite of actions to focus on. We are currently piloting our engagement approach in the Lower American Basin and broader Sacramento River Basin in California, USA. Through this pilot we will initial quick progress against our Ambition 2030 water goals and identify the best data and metrics to use for tracking and communication of progress over time.

In addition to our ongoing pilot work in California, P&G and our Brands have advanced other meaningful conservation efforts in areas of high water stress, including Cascade "Change the Course" and the Colorado River Collaboration.

Cascade and Change the Course

Cascade will support four restoration projects in water-stressed basins in the western US through the Change the Course initiative. The projects will help to restore millions of gallons of freshwater to river systems in this important water-stressed region. Cascade’s commitment will help P&G progress toward our goal to protect water for people and nature in priority basins. It complements their consumer education campaign that works to help reduce water use in the home by moving U.S. consumers from handwashing to using the dishwasher.

Colorado River Collaboration

The southwestern U.S. faces increasing stress on their water resources and organizations are working on creative, collaborative ways to ensure key water sources are prepared for the future. P&G is excited to be one of eight major corporations to support a landmark collective funding agreement that complements existing funding from the state of Arizona to compensate the Colorado River Indian Tribe (CRIT) for conserving billions of liters of water — directly shoring up declining water levels in Lake Mead, an essential water source for millions of people.

Providing Clean Drinking through
Children’s Safe Drinking Water

In 2004, we launched the non-profit program that uses a P&G-invented technology P&G Purifier of Water packets that can transform 10 liters of dirty and potentially deadly water into clean, drinkable water in only 30 minutes.

Working with more than 150 public, private and non-profit partners, we have delivered more than 19 billion liters of clean water that has helped transform communities through improved health, access to education and better economic opportunities. We’ve set a new goal of providing 25 billion liters by 2025. To learn more about the CSDW Program, visit our website: https://csdw.org/.

little southeast asian girl holding 2 P&G branded plastic cups, 1 of tea and 1 of water.