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Monika Freyman

Monika researches corporate and investor exposure to risks related to growing water scarcity and water quality issues. She explores capital markets solutions to these challenges and ways that businesses and investors can more proactively manage water risks and limit impacts to water resources. Her work looks to reshape how economic actors value water and drive better water management, recognizing that healthy water resources are an economic imperative. In addition to her current focus on water use trends in shale energy development Monika supports the Water Program's research on water issues in agriculture and municipal systems.
Monika Freyman

Director, Water Program

Monika researches corporate and investor exposure to risks related to growing water scarcity and water quality issues.  She explores capital markets solutions to these challenges and ways that businesses and investors can more proactively manage water risks and limit impacts to water resources.  Her work looks to reshape how economic actors value water and drive better water management, recognizing that healthy water resources are an economic imperative.

Monika focuses on working with investors on deepening their integration of environmental, social and governance factors, and in particular water, into portfolio management and engagement processes.  She directs the Investor Water Hub, which is a working group of INCR that promotes peer-to-peer learning and is developing an investor water risk assessment model or approach. Many of the ideas and resources developed for investors interested in water risk integration can be found at www.ceres.org/investorwaterhandbook.

Monika also studies water risks in shale energy development and supports the Water Program’s work on water issues across a variety of sectors including agriculture, infrastructure and municipal systems.

A major theme in all of her work is to more closely connect the scientific and financial fields.  Prior to Ceres, Monika worked as a research consultant for the Initiative for Responsible Investment at Harvard, publishing a white paper that explored the roots of the concept of sustainability from a variety of fields to inform the Sustainable Accounting Standards Board (SASB). Previous to this she worked as a financial analyst for an emerging market equity fund and in fixed income sell-side research. Monika was awarded the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship for her work on wetland ecosystems earning a Masters of Science in aquatic ecology, has an undergraduate degree in finance, and is a chartered financial analyst.

Recent Papers

An Investor Handbook for Water Risk Integration
By Monika Freyman and Siobhan Collins
March 2015

Hydraulic Fracturing & Water Stress: Water Demand by the Numbers, Shareholder, Lender & Operator Guide to Water Sourcing
By Monika Freyman
February 2014

Recent Blog Posts

Enterprising Investor

Liquidity Risks of the H2O Variety

by Monika FreymanEnterprising Investor Posted on Aug 12, 2015

The fact is water — or the lack of it — poses investor risks. Companies and investors can no longer ignore increasing competition over limited water resources. Some investors view water as one of the many environmental, social, and governance (ESG) variables that can have very tangible payoffs — if studied and the lessons applied properly.

China Water Risk

Investors Can No Longer Ignore Water Risks

by Monika FreymanChina Water Risk Posted on Jul 14, 2015

Water – or lack of it – is becoming a bigger financial issue for investors. The World Economic Forum recently named water availability as the “top global risk.” Often overlooked by investors, and society at large, is that very little of water is readily available for human use and even less is truly renewable.

The Guardian UK

Fracking and water: what we can learn from the US experience

by Monika Freyman and David Hampton The Guardian UK Posted on Mar 21, 2014

Water is a critical but contentious resource for the fracking industry, which is booming in the US and poised to take off globally.

UCS

Fracking and My Community’s Water: What Do We Know or When Will We Know It?

by Monika FreymanUCS Posted on Sep 13, 2013

Controversy concerning the practice of hydraulic fracturing and unconventional oil and gas development is about more than just breaking up underground rock deposits to release gas and oil.

National Geographic

Water Protection Gets Shortchanged in Proposed Fracking Rules

by Monika FreymanNational Geographic Posted on May 23, 2013

Proposed standards that the U.S. Department of Interior announced for fracking on federal and Indian lands are important, especially in the arid West where water is gold. Unfortunately, water protection gets short shrift in the rules that, once finalized, will apply to 750 million acres of public lands.