Werner & Mertz – Committed to clean water around the world
March 22 is the 25th World Water Day, an annual event coordinated by UN-Water, a UNESCO agency. In observance of this special day, the family-owned Werner & Mertz of Mainz is donating 20,000 EUR to the organization Viva con Agua for the construction of drinking water wells in Ethiopia.
The theme is "Wastewater" for this year's World Water Day, which is devoted to the world's handling of water contaminated by industry and treated with inefficient technology or not at all.
At Werner & Mertz, the Mainz manufacturer of laundry, cleaning and care products, handling water with care has always been a part of the corporate philosophy. Furthermore, Werner & Mertz acts on its belief that people all over the world should have access to clean water that is not endangered by wastewater.
"Clean drinking water must be available to all people everywhere. Our fundamental philosophy calls for sustainability in everything we do. The cooperation with Viva con Agua should bring a real improvement in quality of life for many people," said Reinhard Schneider, CEO of Werner & Mertz.
Here in Germany we take for granted our water supply and wastewater treatment and the high standards that apply to both. In many other countries of the world, however, similar water quality is an exception. Some nine percent of the world's population has no access to clean water. Eighty percent of the wastewater flows back into the ecosystem without treatment or reuse and 1.8 billion people still drink water contaminated by germs.
20,000 EUR for water projects in Ethiopia
That's the situation in Ethiopia too. Despite positive developments in recent years, the East African nation is still among the world's economically weakest countries. In 2015 only slightly more than half of Ethiopia's people had a proper connection to a drinking water supply. Every day many people consume dirty water or have to walk several kilometers to gain access to this vital raw material.
To improve the situation there, Werner & Mertz is working with the Hamburg-based Viva con Agua, a non-profit organization that manages drinking water projects around the globe. In a related project, Werner & Mertz and its Frosch brand kicked off the fund-raising activity "Gurgling for Water" on Sustainability Day in December 2016 in Düsseldorf.
The proceeds of 20,000 EUR will go toward the construction of drinking water wells. To date, a 10,000 EUR donation has funded the drilling of a well that gives about 500 people access to clean drinking water.
Frosch protects frogs: Strong together for water habitats
At home too Werner & Mertz has long devoted itself to protecting this precious resource. Instead of using valuable drinking water, the company draws water from a well in its own Water Center for production purposes and forgoes the use of chemical additives such as lyes and acids in water treatment.
Wastewater from production is treated in special facilities where the minerals are extracted and pressed into filter sludge, which is then used as a supplemental material in brick manufacturing for the construction industry. The pre-treated wastewater is cleaned in the city's treatment plant and then directed into the Rhine.
Water protection extends far beyond the boundary lines of Werner & Mertz premises. For nearly 150 years the frog has been featured in the corporate logo. That's just one reason for Werner & Mertz to fight for its natural hero and the frog's habitat. Since 1999 Werner & Mertz has cooperated with NABU in Rhineland-Palatinate in "Frosch protects frogs", a project dedicated to protecting the natural habitat of the tree frog and other animal species that live in and near the water.
Werner & Mertz sees the cooperation as its contribution to preserving the natural balance and biological diversity of riverscapes and other wetlands like raised bogs. In the end, this engagement, like the development of the Frosch brand, is aimed at doing more to protect our waters.
More about how Werner & Mertz protects water is under the following link: http://ganzheitlich-nachhaltig.de
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