Mark Kinver reporting for the BBC says: 'An international standard on water reduction has been launched in an effort to order to encourage businesses to use water more sustainably. The UK's Carbon Trust, which developed the scheme, said many business leaders did not see the issue as a priority. The Water Standard will require firms to measure water use and demonstrate efforts taken to reduce consumption.

"We know that most businesses that are very big users of water don't really have a handle on [water stewardship]," explained Carbon Trust chief executive Tom Delay. "Very few measure it, even fewer have targets to reduce consumption. So even if there is not a significant cost penalty for water use, there is a very significant business risk."

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