2005 Stockholm Industry Water Award Honors Water Treatment Product

The Procter & Gamble Company, USA, has been awarded the 2005 Stockholm Industry Water Award in recognition of its development of the PuR - Purifier of Water® drinking water treatment system for households not served by a potable water supply system, or for use in disaster relief.

STOCKHOLM, May 25, 2005 -- The Procter & Gamble Company, USA, has been awarded the 2005 Stockholm Industry Water Award in recognition of its development of the PuR - Purifier of Water® drinking water treatment system for households not served by a potable water supply system, or for use in disaster relief.

Designed for use in the developing world, where over 1 billion people still lack access to safe drinking water and an estimated two million children die each year because of preventable diarrhoeal diseases, the product consists of a sachet of chemicals commonly used in conventional municipal water treatment. Each sachet contains powder to treat 10 litres of water and is effective in removing bacteria, viruses, parasites and some heavy metals in contaminated water.

The Stockholm Industry Water Award stimulates business sector contributions to sustainable development in the water sector, and to minimised water consumption and pollution load on the environment. Established in 2000 by the Stockholm Water Foundation in collaboration with the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, the award is presented each August during the annual World Water Week in Stockholm, August 21-27, 2005 (www.worldwaterweek.org).

Easy to Use, and Over 260 Million Litres of Safe Water Provided

Since its introduction in 2000, PuR has provided 260 million litres of safe, clean water. It has been used in the Philippines, Guatemala, Morocco, Pakistan, Haiti, Liberia, Bangladesh, Kenya, Uganda, Chad, Botswana, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Sudan, Iran, Ethiopia, Iraq, and in the tsunami ravaged region of South East Asia, where 15 million sachets were delivered ¿ enough to treat 150 million litres of water. It works through a process of precipitation, coagulation, flocculation and disinfection.

Purifier of Water is easy to use and requires no special skills or equipment beyond basic household implements. PuRâ is a pragmatic, point-of-use method with the advantages of acceptable cost, immediate availability, ease of access on a short-term basis and long-term product stability. It can be used anywhere where water is available. In both the short and long term, this approach is complementary to the development of piped water infrastructure and is extremely well adapted to providing safe water in emergency situations.

Through the product, P&G has demonstrated its commitment to improving the quality of peoples' daily lives in the developing world. Recognising that safe drinking water is a fundamental and critical need, the company has provided the research and development, manufacturing and financial resources to develop PuR. Equally essential, it has worked closely with non-governmental organisations, local and national governments and health organisations.

P&G's "social marketing" and training approach includes providing the product at cost to local distribution networks and a philanthropy programme, the Children's Safe Drinking Water programme.

"We are very pleased to recognise this innovative and practical contribution to help meet the urgent need for safe drinking water in the world, in both emergency circumstances where immediate assistance is imperative, and in areas of chronic shortage that do not yet have access to basic water services," said Dr. Björn Rosén, chairperson of the Award Committee.

P&G's Associate Director for Corporate Sustainable Development in Europe, Dr. Peter White, said: "We are delighted to have received this award from the Stockholm Water Foundation. With our partners we have made significant progress with PuR - Purifier of Water and we will continue to focus our efforts in countries where clean water is desperately needed."

How it Works

The powdered product, which includes ferric sulphate and calcium hypochlorite, is delivered in small sachets. Each sachet costs US$ 0.10 (EUR 0.09) and can provide 10 litres of clean drinking water. The treatment process involves stirring the water for 5 minutes until clear (a strong visual signal), filtering the water through a cloth, disposing of separated floc in a latrine, letting clear water stand for 20 minutes to allow for complete disinfection, and safe storage in a suitable container. PuR does require education and training from health care workers like nurses, something which Procter & Gamble co-ordinates with relief agencies using the product.

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