Vedanta Resources signed the WBCSD Pledge for Access to safe Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) at the workplace in October 2014. The company is implementing the WASH Pledge in all of its sites, and is also assisting the WBCSD in raising awareness on the issue of WASH at the workplace. The company’s leadership demonstrates their commitment through internal and external communication, including through a WASH Pledge CEO Call to Action video on World Toilet Day 2015 with Tom Albanese, CEO of Vedanta. This case study sheds light on the implementation of the Pledge at global level specifically in
the aluminum and zinc sectors in India.
The WASH at the workplace Pledge (“WASH Pledge”) was launched in September 2013 to address the WBCSD’s Action 2020 Water Must-Have of Significantly Accelerating the progressive realization of the human right to water and sanitation, relative to the 2012 baseline. This is the societal must-have linked to the WBCSD’s Vision 2050 of 9 billion people living well within the boundaries of this planet. According to estimates, 1.8 billion people currently do not have access to safe drinking water, and over 4 billion people do not have access to safe sanitation. In addition, 1 in every 8 people still practices open defecation. This poses an immense cost to society, but also presents an important opportunity. Every US dollar invested in water and sanitation yields a return of USD 4.3 through reduced health care costs for individuals and society, and hygiene behavior change, specifically handwashing is one of the most cost-effective health interventions. The WBCSD is leading the business contribution to address this issue. An important first step is to ensure safe and sustainable access to WASH for employees at the workplace.