Against a backdrop of significant under-investment, the latest theme for World Water Day 2019 is ‘Leaving no one behind'.
Yet to be able to achieve this outcome by 2030, according to Dublin-based KBI Global Investors (KBIGI), this will require "a massive commitment" to infrastructure spending over the coming decade.
KBIGI - one of the industry's pioneers in water investing - point that despite ageing and depleted infrastructure, even in the most developed cities, there is a dire need of rehabilitation or replacement. But there is "good news", according to Colm O'Connor, pictured below, senior portfolio manager on the KBIGI Global Sustainable Infrastructure Strategy, as believes that we have started to see "strong signs" that the situation is starting to be addressed.
"The right to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation as a human right that is essential for the full enjoyment of life and all human rights," United Nations statement in 2010
In its 2013 ‘Business-as-usual scenario' report, the World Economic Forum stated that investment in Water Infrastructure of circa $26 trillion would be required by 2030, with an almost universal consensus amongst asset managers, that water will be one of the largest components of infrastructure spend over the coming decades.
In 2010, the United Nations declared the "right to safe and clean drinking water and sanitation as a human right that is essential for the full enjoyment of life and all human rights."
Speaking at an Infrastructure Forum in London only last week, O'Connor said: "The world's largest public pension plans have been investing in infrastructure for more than a decade, but it is only over the past few years that we have seen broader acceptance and integration of infrastructure into institutional portfolios.
"Defined by its stability, predictability of cashflow and defensive/monopolistic businesses with strong regulation, the asset class has today become a core staple in most investment portfolios and presents numerous exciting investment opportunities."
KBIGI launched Global Water and Global Clean Energy strategies almost 20 years ago, building up its specialist expertise in companies it believes will benefit from the significant investment in infrastructure and technology created by the severe supply, demand and regulatory challenges that are prevalent around the provision of water and energy to the global population.