Water management

Water is an essential resource for life, and we are therefore committed to using it efficiently, preventing risks, and minimizing impacts. As such, we sustainably manage water with the aim of seeking out new solutions at the operational level to minimize consumption, use it responsibly, and preserve the quality of the receiving bodies.

CEO Water Mandate logo

Endorsing the CEO Water Mandate

We bolstered our commitment to address global water challenges by joining the CEO Water Mandate. This is an initiative led by the United Nations Global Compact in collaboration with the Pacific Institute concerning water, sanitation, and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Thus, we are showing our corporate effort and responsibility towards progress and continuous improvement in these six core areas of water stewardship:

  1. Direct operations
  2. Supply chain and watershed management
  3. Collective action
  4. Public policy
  5. Community engagement
  6. Transparency
Water management chart

Repsol Water Tool: Our risk analysis tool

We use the Repsol Water Tool (RWT) to assess the risks associated with water. This includes both internal risks (measurement quality, types of water use, treatment technologies, etc.) and external risks (availability, quality, and ecosystems that are withdrawal sources or discharge receiving bodies, future water availability, regulatory and business risks, etc.). This tool enables us to identify businesses and facilities where a greater management effort must be made and the needs for action that are a priority.

Our goals

Although the industrial transformation process will require an increase in our water needs, through the Water Zero project, in the industrial complexes on the iberian peninsula we are committed to:

By 2030

not to increase freshwater withdrawal*​

By 2035

reduce freshwater withdrawal by 30%*

By 2050

achieve the ambition of net zero freshwater withdrawal*

* Compared to 2022 baseline

At the Marcellus (U.S.) Exploration and Production asset, we are committed to:

By 2030

to increase water reuse by up to 10%*, achieving a 5%* by 2026

By 2035

regenerate the natural capital of the ecosystem in this environment, reaching the ambition of net zero freshwater consumption*

* Compared to 2022 baseline and planning

Water indicators

The following infographic reflects how Repsol manages water in accordance with the reporting requirements established by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standard, in particular, GRI 303: Water and effluents, within the 300 series (environmental issues). The aim is to facilitate public access to annual data and to communicate in a transparent manner what are the significant impacts on water and how these are managed.

Annual data 2023

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Other destinations External reuse i i Deep well injection Third Party - Effluent reuse 13 Land Surface water Third-party 405 Third party - Other disposal 99 245 253 Seawater 589 i Filter Freshwater* Non freshwater (salty**) Produced water (salty**) Legend Non-water stressed areas Areas of water stress Water stress not applicable * Freshwater: Total Dissolved Solids <= 1000 mg/l ** Non freshwater: Total Dissolved Solids > 1000 mg/l Water volume data in thousand m3. Water withdrawal (GRI 303-3), discharged (GRI 303-4) and consumed (GRI 303-5) information related to the local water stress situation, based on Aqueduct Water Risk Atlas results. Shared resources Withdrawal Water interaction Operation Internal reuse Effluent treatment Effluent Discharge Other resources Groundwater Third Party - Effluent reuse Produced water from owned operations Produced water from third parties Incoming Total reused water vs. Incoming Total water i i i i i i i Disclosure 303-3 Disclosure GRI 11.6.5 Disclosure 303-1 Third-party Seawater Surface water No treatment Primary Secondary Hydrocarbon COD Suspended solids Tertiary Pollutants i i i Disclosure 303-4 Disclosure 303-2 In all areas In areas of water stress Total volumen of water discharge i <1% Total water reused 3% In all areas In areas of water stress Total volume of water withdrawal Freshwater* Total water consumption in all areas Non freshwater** Disclosure 303-5 Consumption i i Freshwater* Non freshwater (salty**) Produced water (salty**) Repsol - Water withdrawal by business Repsol - Water withdrawal by region Freshwater* Non freshwater** In 2023, Repsol has set water targets in those priority assets for the Company, as a result of the water materiality analysis carried out globally, based on their main risks and freshwater withdrawal from the environment. Refining Chemical Exploration & Production Low Carbon Client & others Freshwater* Rest of the world Spain i <1% 0% <1% 2% 62% 22% 5% 6% 6% 97% i 9% 91% 7,184 3,093 49 ton 18,379 682 93 2,466 ton 555 ton 19,154 24% 15% 35% 3% 96% 10,277 4,501 2,556 2,826 295 36,557 1,220 228,922 30,086 55,649 230,330 233,423 1,851 3,121 7,161 11,458 15,909 8,118 3,099 1,262 627 34,640 55,649 30,086 11,458 7,161 230,330 1,851 233,423 3,121 9,539 4,501 228,922 2,826 295 1,917 6,370 970 13 18,464 589 1,262 1,220 229,821 3,099 7,148 99 4,297 7,161 625 2,556 2 253 245 11,458 13 392 18,464 229,821

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A collaborative approach

Water management should follow an approach that builds joint relationships between stakeholders and regulators for more effective management strategies that prevent risks and mitigate impacts.

Public advisory panel meeting

Maintaining channels for dialogue with our stakeholders

At Repsol, we open channels of communication between society and the Company, such as the Public Advisory Panel for the different industrial complexes, through which the concerns of local residents about safety, health, and the environment, including water, can be heard and conveyed.

Success stories

La Pampilla Refinery, Peru

La Pampilla Water Footprint

La Pampilla refinery has obtained the independent Verification Declaration of its water footprint, according to the requirements of the ISO 14046 standard.

The water footprint assessment conducted in accordance with this standard:

  • Is based on the life cycle analysis
  • Identifies potential water-related environmental impacts
  • Includes geographic and temporal dimensions
  • Identifies the amount of water consumption and changes in water quality
  • Uses hydrology knowledge

This milestone marks a starting point in the verifiable measurement of the Water Footprint and will allow the deployment of actions for the improvement and sustainable management of the water resource. 


Water treatment plant

Reusing water from alternative sources

At the Tarragona Industrial Complex, we use regenerated water from the municipal wastewater treatment plant (WWTP), which reduces the amount of water withdrawn from the environment. Under normal operating conditions, more than 10% of the total flow of water withdrawn comes from the municipal WWTP.

Cartagena refinery and Concawe logo

Efficiency improvement 

The water use efficiency at the Cartagena Refinery makes us a European leader in the sector, with a water consumption ratio 26% lower than the average for other refineries. 

Such great results, which are based on data from the European organization of oil companies for the protection of the environment and health (Concawe), have been achieved thanks to the implementation of specific measures included in the water plan of the industrial complex.

Technicians at Repsol's Technology Lab

Technology Lab (Spain)

At the Technology Lab, they evaluate water treatment technologies to minimize the environmental impact of the effluents from our activities, determined by the presence of certain substances.

In the case of nitrogen content removal, moving bed biofilm reactor technologies (MBBR) improve on traditional technologies, reducing operating costs and space requirements for treatment, and improving discharge quality. This technology has been validated by the TechLab team at laboratory scale with successful results in its application to the particularities of the water streams of our operations.

To further improve the process, these tests have validated the use of another internal waste stream to perform this nitrogen removal operation, avoiding the consumption of commercial chemicals and thus creating a more efficient process.

Puertollano Refinery

Internal water reuse

We have implemented a technological solution for water treatment through clarification with micro-sand filters. In this way, we managed to increase the water recirculation ratio of the refinery itself and minimize the collection and dependence on water from the environment. We also managed to improve the quality of the water discharged into the Ojailén river.

Margarita plant aerial view

Reducing the impact of discharges

We built a new water treatment plant at our Margarita gas production field in order to be able to have the technology to treat the water and achieve the quality specifications for the injection process in the event of a sudden increase in the volumes of formation water produced.

Marcellus Shale in the United States

Sustainable water management

We are committed to a responsible and sustainable water management strategy that includes:

  • Risk analysis before choosing the location of gas wells to protect groundwater resources before, during, and after drilling
  • Recycling of produced water for reuse in the development of new wells
  • Safe water storage
  • Encouraging the transport of water by pipelines instead of trucks

We establish an ongoing dialogue with communities, landowners, and regulators to address concerns and share our water management plans.

View of the Camisea facilities

Blue certificate in Block 57

Acknowledgement awarded by the National Water Authority (ANA), which has been obtained thanks to the measurement, reporting, and reduction of the water footprint and the development of a shared value project with the communities. Thanks to this project, the ecological and participatory restoration of exploratory platforms was carried out, which managed to recover the ecological integrity of the forest, essential for the conservation of local water resources.

A worker looking through a pair of binoculars

Development of a hydrogeological study in Bolivia

As an example of a detailed study of the water supply sources in the areas where we operate, the Hydrogeological Analysis of the Margarita-Huacaya Field was conducted. This study assessed the underground water resources in the area including their availability and evolution, while analyzing fluctuation and weather dependency and checking the sustainability of the system. 

The results allowed us to see how the aquifers in the area worked, control the available resources, assess the impact of extractions on underground water, and optimize the distribution of the sources in an environmentally sustainable way.