AWS CEO Adam Selipsky Kicks Off re:Invent 2022 With Water Sustainability Pledge
“Water scarcity is a major issue around the world and with today’s water positive announcement we are committing to do our part to help solve this rapidly growing challenge,” said Selipsky in a press release issued for the first day of re:Invent 2022.
Amazon Web Services CEO Adam Selipsky got AWS re:Invent 2022 officially underway Monday with a pledge that the cloud behemoth will return more water in communities than it uses in its cloud operations by 2030.
“Water scarcity is a major issue around the world and with today’s water positive announcement we are committing to do our part to help solve this rapidly growing challenge,” said Selipsky in a press release issued for the first day of re:Invent 2022, AWS annual conference which has become one of the IT industry’s biggest annual events. “In just a few years half of the world’s population is projected to live in water-stressed areas, so to ensure all people have access to water, we all need to innovate new ways to help conserve and reuse this precious resource.”
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By 2050, MIT researchers estimate that 52 percent of the world’s projected 9.7 billion people will live in water-stressed areas as a result of climate change.
Under the new water positive pledge, AWS said it was putting in place a water use efficiency (WUE) metric of “0.25 liters of water per kilowatt-hour” as a demonstration of its “leadership in water efficiency” among cloud providers.
“While we are proud of the progress we have made, we know there is more we can do,” said Selipsky in the press release. “We are committed to leading on water stewardship in our cloud operations, and returning more water than we use in the communities where we operate. We know this is the right thing to do for the environment and our customers.”
Selipsky, who oversees sustainability initiatives across Amazon has made sustainability, including climate change and clean energy, a top priority at both Amazon and AWS.
In September, Selipsky attended the Climate Pledge Summit in New York City to shine the spotlight on Amazon’s $10 million donation to Water.org as part of AWS’ efforts to help bring safe water access to one million people by 2025. That initiative is aimed at providing three billion liters of water per year to those facing water scarcity.
As part of its water positive pledge, AWS announced several new water replenishment projects which when completed will provide more than 823 million liters of water to communities each year.
In the United States, AWS said beginning in the winter it will work with the conservation non-profit Freshwater Trust, and the Omochumne-Hartnell Water District to “recharge 189 million liters of groundwater per year” using winter water from the Cosumnes River.
In the United Kingdom, AWS said it will work with The Rivers Trust and Action for the River Kennet to create two wetlands on a tributary of the River Thames that will “recharge over 587 million liters” of groundwater per year.
In India, AWS said it will continue to support WaterAid to complete projects in Hyderabad and Andhra Pradesh. That project, AWS said, is expected to supply 500 households–approximately 2,100 people–with an estimated 47 million liters of water per year
As part of its water positive pledge, AWS said it will report annually on new innovations in water efficiency including water replenishment projects, community reuse and other activities.