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World Water Day Brings More Pledges from Dole, Coca-Cola, UL

On the 17th annual World Water Day, a number of companies touted innovations and commitments to improving and conserving the world's water resources.

Among the early announcements were pledges from PepsiCo, Nestlé and others; as World Water Day progressed even more firms made commitments and unveiled projects focused on water scarcity and water quality.

Continuing the participation of food and beverage companies in Water Day, Coca-Cola expanded its partnership with USAID, the U.S. Agency for International Development. The company has pledged an additional $12.7 million to the Water and Development Alliance (WADA), which will go toward water projects in Angola, Burundi, Ghana, Malawi, Mozambique, Senegal, South Africa, and Tanzania.

Commemorating World Water Day, Dole today unveiled a new packing process from its Costa Rican banana operations that will cut water used by those sites by as much as 80 percent.

The project, called the New Millennium Packing System, sets a goal of reducing water used in a packing plant by a factor of 10 and energy used by 50 percent compared to a typical plant. The innovation, spearheaded by Standard Fruit de Costa Rica, would save the industry 60 million cubic meters of water per year, enough to supply 30,000 people with water for a year, according to company estimates.

Focusing on ways to reduce individual consumption levels, Underwriters Laboratories has created a water consumption calculator to help individuals measure and find ways to reduce the amount of water they use in the kitchen, bath, laundry room and lawn.

Veolia Water also targeted the consumer market, with its list of five ways to lower water use, including not flushing "flushable" products like wipes, diapers, or facial tissues; not flushing medications or personal care products, and keeping kitchen grease out of the sink.

Dow Chemical also made two announcements on World Water Day: The first highlight's the company's donation of two ultrafiltration modules to the nonprofit Pure Water for the World, to be put to use in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The filtration units will provide clean water to as many as 10,000 people per day in the earthquake-devastated country.

Dow is also sponsoring a day-long athletic event taking place in locations around the world to raise awareness about water issues. The Dow Live Earth Run for Water is a six-kilometer run in almost 100 cities around the globe on April 18, 2010.

For more coverage from World Water Day 2010, visit's water news and resources page.

Photo CC-licensed by Flickr user Flowery *L*u*z*a*.

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