Co-operation between stakeholders is vital in securing future supplies and managing water better, according to a new report.

Anglian Water worked alongside international and national organisations such as HSBC, Asda, Nestle and the Environment Agency to produce the report, Sink or Swim. The report examines new strategies on how water can be sustainably managed to secure supplies while underpinning business and growth.

The collaborative work highlights the importance of multi-sector co-ordination and finance between businesses, water companies and the government in the management of scarce water resources to significantly reduce risks to sustainable supply.

The report has been launched at the Royal Society in London by the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership, as part of the National Capital Leaders Platform and includes nine companies from six sectors.

Peter Simpson, Chief Executive of Anglian Water, who spoke at the Royal Society launch said: “Ensuring that water is carefully stewarded and available in sufficient quantity and quality is a vital component of business success.

“Water scarcity can damage productivity, disrupt supply chains, put water users in competition with each other, and ultimately harm corporate trust and reputation. These risks impact sectors in many different ways, but collaboration and innovation are absolutely key to achieving resilience and to protecting the economy.”

The report presents four new financial models, each of which offers an innovative approach to achieving multi-sector water investments. The models were developed by examining the value of water to different sectors and scrutinising various income and finance streams.

Chris Brown, Sustainable Business Director at Asda, said: “Inconsistent or unreliable supply of produce – caused by water scarcity or flooding - has a direct impact on the prices consumers pay. Retailers cannot act alone to secure necessary water supplies: a collaborative approach is needed, which is why we are glad to be part of this initiative.”