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Brooke Barton

Brooke leads Ceres’ Water & Food Programs, directing the organization’s strategy for mobilizing leading corporations and investors to address the sustainability risks facing our freshwater, food and agriculture systems. In this capacity, she oversees Ceres’ research and private sector engagement activities on the financial risks associated with growing freshwater challenges and deforestation.
Brooke Barton

Senior Program Director, Water & Food Programs

Brooke leads Ceres’ Water & Food Programs, directing the organization’s strategy for mobilizing leading corporations and investors to address the sustainability risks facing our freshwater, food and agriculture systems. In this capacity, she oversees Ceres’ research and private sector engagement activities on the financial risks associated with growing freshwater challenges and deforestation. She is the co-author of The Ceres Aqua Gauge: A Framework for 21st Century Water Risk Management and two studies focused on agricultural water risks facing the food sector: Feeding Ourselves Thirsty: How the Food Sector is Managing Global Water Risks and Water & Climate Risks Facing U.S. Corn Production. Previously, Brooke directly advised Ceres’ member companies in the food and beverage sector on strategies for enhancing the overall sustainability of their operations and supply chains.

Prior to Ceres, Brooke was a researcher for the Harvard Business School's Social Enterprise Initiative, where she wrote case studies and articles on the integration of business strategy and sustainability. She holds a master's degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and a B.A. in economics from Duke University. She speaks Spanish and Portuguese.

Recent Blog Posts

Ceres

Recipe For AgWater Stewardship: How the Food And Beverage Sector Can Protect Freshwater Resources

by Brooke Barton, Senior Program Director, Water & Food Programs Ceres Posted on Oct 24, 2016

The global food sector uses more than 70% of the world’s freshwater supply, largely for growing crops. Through their massive purchasing power, the companies that buy, process and sell the food that we eat have the power to raise the bar for sustainable water use in farming. Through the AgWater Challenge, Ceres and WWF have identified the five key ingredients of meaningful agricultural water stewardship by food and beverage companies.

Fast Co Exist

California's Water Crisis Is The Result Of Market Failure As Much As Drought

by Brooke BartonFast Co Exist Posted on Jun 02, 2015

Weak pricing signals. Poor accounting. Byzantine rules. These are just a few of the reasons why California is in the midst of a water crisis. A lack of rainfall is perhaps the least of the state's problems. California's situation is symptomatic of escalating water risks all across the world, where water is typically undervalued and, as a result, used incredibly inefficiently as more people than ever need it.

National Geographic

Corn Remains King in USDA Irrigation Survey

by Brooke BartonNational Geographic Posted on Feb 10, 2015

It’s no secret that our agricultural industry is very thirsty, gobbling up 80 percent of the freshwater that America consumes each year. It takes a lot of water to feed the nation, and every five years we get an accounting of just how much it takes, for what crops and at what cost, from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm and Ranch Irrigation Survey.

The Guardian UK

Why is Europe failing to take the energy-water connection seriously?

by Brooke BartonThe Guardian UK Posted on Nov 04, 2013

Concerns are intensifying in the US about the troubling interdependence of the economy's water and energy needs.

National Geographic

Campbell’s Challenge: Growing Lots of Tomatoes in Water-Scarce California

by Peyton Fleming and Brooke BartonNational Geographic Posted on Oct 22, 2013

Last month, Ceres’ water team got some insights into how Campbell Soup is preparing for a likely drier future during a half-day visit to the 38-year-old processing plant and two nearby farms.

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