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Aug 18, 2020

Welcome to RIMScast. Your host is Justin Smulison, Business Content Manager at RIMS, the Risk and Insurance Management Society.


Water scarcity is an ever-present risk that companies should be keeping on their risk registers. To discuss this increasingly important topic with Justin today is James Workman, the founder and VP of Business Development at AquaShares Inc., an online water savings market platform.


James is a writer, speaker, teacher, and creator of natural resource conservation markets. He has extensively studied water and advises companies of scarcity risks. He is also the author of the nonfiction book, Heart of Dryness: How the Last Bushmen Can Help Us Endure the Coming Age of Permanent Drought.


In this episode, Justin and James discuss how water is impacting supply chains, how James is seeing water risk escalate globally, his take on the recently unveiled SDG Global Acceleration Framework, how to incentivize people to save water, and how companies and risk professionals can take the lead on combating water scarcity.


Water impacts us all, so be sure to stay tuned in to hear more about this incredibly important topic!


Key Takeaways:

[:01] About RIMS’ Transitional Membership.

[:25] About today’s episode.

[:32] Current RIMS features and events.

[1:27] More about today’s discussion with James Workman.

[1:56] Justin welcomes James Workman to RIMScast!

[2:12] James shares why water and water scarcity/risk management fascinates him.

[4:08] About James’ career background.

[5:37] How James ended up working with Nelson Mandela.

[7:14] With the water risk escalating globally, does James feel that it is a risk that continually gets put on the back burner to other issues?

[8:50] James shares how he sees water impacting supply chains (and how it will continue to do so).

[11:00] James defines ‘water governance.’

[12:11] The UN recently unveiled its SDG Global Acceleration Framework. It marks their effort to deliver on the promise of safe water and sanitation for everybody globally by the year 2030. What does James think of the framework? And what does he feel are the details or elements of the framework that offer traction to organizations and risk professionals?

[14:25] Does James feel that the UN can’t fully enforce whatever framework it tries to implement?

[15:19] Can water scarcity be tied to civil war?

[16:55] Can water scarcity be tied to a company’s reputation?

[17:46] How does this bottom-up approach come into play when it comes to companies and risk professionals? Is the framework rooted in the interconnection of reputation, operation, and bottom line?

[19:16] Two years ago, Cape Town, South Africa was on its way to Day Zero. How much of a sign of things to come was that event for other major cities?

[21:48] James elaborates further on how to incentivize people to save water.

[23:42] In what ways can companies and risk professionals take the lead on combating water scarcity?

[25:33] Justin thanks James Workman for joining RIMScast and shares some of the links to check out in this week’s show notes!


Mentioned in this Episode:

SDG 6 Global Acceleration Framework

RIMScast: World Water Day 2020: “Water Risks with Henk Ovink, Special Envoy for International Water Affairs for the Kingdom of the Netherlands”

Risk Management Monitor: “Cape Town’s Water Shortage Approaching ‘Day Zero’”

RIMS Advisory Services — Ask a Peer

RIMS ERM Conference 2020: Call for ERM Award Submissions

RIMS Risk Leaders Series

Upcoming RIMS Webinars

On-Demand Webinars

RIMS Coronavirus Information Center

RIMS Advocacy: Coronavirus Advocacy Information

RM Magazine

Risk Management Monitor

RIMS-Certified Risk Management Professional (RIMS-CRMP)


RIMS Transitional Membership — Available to RIMS professional or associate members upon their separation from their current place of employment. Transitional membership is renewable once, or a maximum of two years from the date of separation.

Download any episode of RIMScast.


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Follow up with Our Guest:

James Workman’s LinkedIn

AquaShares Inc.

Heart of Dryness: How the Last Bushmen Can Help Us Endure the Coming Age of Permanent Drought, by James G. Workman