Why Water is an Important Issue

Water is at the heart of every aspect of human development. We need water to nourish us, sustain the natural world, produce food and energy, and propel economic growth.


But water scarcity is a growing problem that impacts people around the world. Globally, 2.3 billion people live in water-stressed countries and 21 of the world’s 37 largest groundwater reservoirs are being depleted faster than they can be refilled. By 2030, scientists predict a 40% shortfall in the available global water supply. Lake Mead and Lake Powell – two of the largest reservoirs in the U.S. – are at their lowest levels ever, threatening water and power shortages for millions of people in the American west. 


Water quality is also a growing concern, with over 80% of wastewater flowing back into the environment without being treated or reused. In the U.S., forever chemicals (PFAS) are present in over 100 waterways across 29 states and the District of Columbia. 


Rising demand for water and deteriorating water quality threaten the safety and health of people and impact the balance of nature. Businesses are expected to play a significant role in achieving the bold and transformative steps urgently needed to shift the world onto a sustainable and resilient path. Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) is committed to doing our part to ensure sustainable water use. That’s why we named "Water" as one of our four environmental sustainability focus areas.

TMNA’s Commitment to Water as a Shared Resource

TMNA is committed to engaging in and supporting efforts that reduce and recycle water used in our facilities, protect water bodies, invest in education and awareness, and share best practices with others. As the availability of clean water becomes more and more important to Toyota communities across the region, we will continue to follow the principles set forth by the Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS) International Water Stewardship Standard. 

Our Water Strategy

In North America, we are moving beyond an onsite water management approach to one of site and watershed water stewardship. To us, water stewardship means using water in a way that is socially equitable, environmentally sustainable and economically beneficial, and is achieved through working with stakeholders on site- and watershed-based actions. Our projects focus on:


Water Conservation

Team members are always on the lookout for ways to improve water efficiency in direct operations and use recycled/reused water when applicable. The more water we recycle and reuse, the less we have to bring in from fresh water sources. This is especially important in areas of water stress, where water isn't always readily available. We've installed reverse osmosis systems and membrane bio reactors and implemented a variety of projects to get more out of every drop. 


Water Quality

Protecting water quality is a key component of our approach to water stewardship. Some of our sites discharge wastewater, which we monitor and treat to meet local, state and federal regulations and to avoid negatively impacting water bodies.


Water Ecosystems

We engage with communities, NGOs and strategic partners to conserve, restore and protect water and water-related ecosystems. Our outreach activities are a vital part of our commitment to collective action to solve local water challenges.

SDG 12

Toyota’s approach to water stewardship supports Goal #6 on Clean Water and Sanitation for All, one of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

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We support community efforts to educate individuals and families about water conservation and the importance of protecting water quality. These activities help scale up conservation efforts and make positive outcomes more impactful.


Helping Restore Water Flows in the Colorado River Delta

The State of Baja California in Mexico exports around 150 million cubic meters of water (40,000 million gallons) each year from the Colorado River to the cities of Tecate and Tijuana, and in recent years to Rosarito and Ensenada. The agricultural sector consumes the majority of this water, reducing water available for people and nature in the Colorado River Delta. 


To address these challenges, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) works with local partners, cities and the agricultural sector, aiming to secure sufficient and reliable water supplies for people and nature. TNC seeks to permanently protect over 16,100 acres of wetlands along the Hardy River, the lower Colorado River and the Colorado River Estuary.


TMNA provided $100,000 to TNC in FY2023 to support activities to acquire, secure and monitor the delivery of water volume for environmental restoration in the Colorado River Delta. Water volume is secured from water savings in the Mexicali Valley agricultural sector from water shepherding, crop switching or irrigation technification.


With Toyota’s support, TNC succeeded in securing water to help restore flow into the Hardy River. In July 2022, TNC delivered 132 million gallons, which doubled the flow of the river for a few weeks.