Bloomberg to launch water data and analysis service

Media giant adds to ESG service offering

Global media and data giant Bloomberg says it plans to launch a service focusing on water in early in 2011.
“We ourselves will be launching a water service in the New Year,” said Michael Liebreich, chief executive of Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
Speaking at the presentation of the Carbon Disclosure Project’s new Water Disclosure project’s inaugural results in London, Liebreich cited the “very poor information” currently available on water usage. “Water is the next big challenge,” he said.
The company has made environmental, social and governance data a strategic priority – with Chairman Peter Grauer telling Responsible Investor’s ESG USA event in June that it will be a long-term growth area.
Bloomberg is currently recruiting a New York-based Head of Water Services, to oversee research, workshops and an annual Water & Energy Leadership Forum. There is also a senior position being advertisedin London. Liebreich, who founded New Energy Finance in 2004 before selling it to Bloomberg last year, pointed to the role asset owners can play as water becomes – in the words of the CDP – “the new carbon”.
“Asset owners can put pressure on companies like no one else, the role of the investors is absolutely critical,” Liebreich said.
Colin Melvin, the CEO of Hermes Equity Ownership Services, said water has got to become part of investors’ decision making. “This is not a big issue for investors right now but it is potentially huge,” he added. Hermes EOS has been engaging with 31 companies on water matters since April 2009.
Jacqueline McGlade, Executive Director of the European Environment Agency, revealed that there are plans for a European Union-wide water efficiency target to be discussed at ministerial level next year.