10+ years of impactful collaboration between GWP-Med & Coca-Cola on Non-Conventional Water Resources

On 2 June 2021, GWP-Med and the Coca-Cola Company were invited to present the results of their 10+ year collaboration on NCWR technical solutions, at the launch event for the GWP report "Mobilising Change: 10 years of climate resilient water investments".

Ms. Sofia Kilifi, Sustainability & Community Manager Europe at The Coca-Cola Company, and Mr. Vangelis Constantianos, Executive Secretary at the Global Water Partnership - Mediterranean, presented on more than 10 years of impactful collaboration around Non-Conventional Water Resources (NCWR) technical solutions, at an event celebrating best practices for climate resilient investments from across the globe. The event, gathering more than 120 participants, launched the report, Mobilising Change: 10 years of climate resilient water investments – focusing on ‘stories of change’ from around the world and on lessons learned in the nearly 10-year GWP water and climate programme.

The GWP-Med / Coca-Cola collaboration has yielded 123 technical Interventions for water security and climate resilience in Greece, Malta, Cyprus and Italy, through the Non-Conventional Water Resources Programme.

Watch the video:

Ms. Kilifi and Mr. Constantianos highlighted the key pillars that made the collaboration unique and impactful. NCWR solutions designed and implemented were demand-driven, with needs were expressed by, prioritised with, and implemented in close synergy with the benefiting municipalities. Solutions were applied locally, with water management and adaptation efforts being area-specific, adding to the local water budget, most often in island communities, providing no-regret adaptation options.  They were tripartite, based on a strong synergy between local institutions, a regional multi-stakeholder organisation (GWP-Med), and a private sector company guided by sustainabilty principles, providing a paradigm on how operational partnerships should be built in order to deliver results. Multi-stakeholder engagement was chosen as the only safe path to results, and by design all those having a stake in the solutions had the chance to join, comment, assist, disseminate.

In order to ensure effective responses to real-life practical challenges, adaptative management was at the heart of design and implementation. From practical issues that are commonly witnessed when applying technical field works, to differentiated approaches in designing actions, or clashing views in local consultations, addressing these challenges was enriching for the project's evolution. Setting clear and measurable targets was the solid foundation for the shared vision, making all partners accountable and allowing to scale up the programme, by documenting impact and effectively mobilising the necessary support and resources.

Most importantly, these tangible interventions have proven highly replicable, as is demonstrated for example by the pilot installation of ‘water delivery kiosks’ first applied in Syros island, in Greece, and then replicated at scale of hundreds in the Greek Archipelago by local authorities.

More information about the NCWR programme.