Water Resource Management

UMC Water Management Policy and Commitment

Recent climate changes have led to severe fluctuations in precipitation with more frequent floods and droughts. External stakeholders are also increasingly concerned about issues related to water resources. To respond to complex water resource issues on a timely basis and effectively integrate prevention, consumption reduction, contingency response, and other management concepts, UMC has successfully completed water risk factor identification and response measures. The UMC Water Resource Management Policy and Commitment was announced in 2015 to serve as our highest guiding principles for water resource management.




Maximize water efficiency, improve the tolerance ability of upstream and downstream value chains to water risks, and promote attention to and conservation of water resources.




  1. Introduce water risk management system
  2. Develop and utilize diverse water sources
  3. Use active management indicators to promote water conservation
  4. Cooperate with supply chains to reduce water footprint
  5. Provide open and transparent water information
  6. Widely promote water education



Water Risk Management

Given extreme climates, water risks have become key issues facing businesses, and for the semiconductor industry, water resource risk management has become an urgent issue.



Risk of water shortage which was a significant concern of stakeholders in 2021.

Aspect of Risk: Physical

Long-Term: Water shortage impacting production

Description of Scenario

  • Decrease in tap water supply increases operating costs

Potential Financial Impacts

  • Annual operating cost is estimated to increase by about NT$120 million

UMC’s Response

  • Contract water tanker and private water sources to make up for water shortages
  • Storage tanks have already been installed in all fabs to improve water storage control flexibility
  • Continue to monitor the government's capacity to strengthen cross-regional dispatching of water resources
  • Expand water recovery and reuse to reduce water demand
  • Assess the introduction of emerging water sources
  • Establish a water contingency plan


Short-Term: Increases in intensity and frequency of typhoons, storms, and natural disasters result in employee inability to work

UMC Response

  • Build Industry 5.0 to reduce the impact of manpower


Short-Term: Increased cost of raw material distribution and transportation

UMC Response

  • Establish a second supplier to provide additional backup energy
  • Supplier risk assessment to avoid or reduce purchases from high-risk producing areas
  • Establish multiple transport routes and avoid risky routes
  • Increase the storage capacity of local manufacturers
  • Increased internal storage capacity

Long-Term: Delivery delays from suppliers due to water/electricity constraints

UMC Response

  • Supplier risk assessment
  • Investigate the in-plant demand and supplier capacity and the impact of government water/electricity restrictions
  • Manufacturers provide water storage plans and cooperation models with private water resource providers
  • Monitor the status of suppliers, increase safety stock, and establish relationships with second suppliers

Aspect of Risk: Transition

Policy and Regulation: Taiwan imposes water surcharge

UMC Response

  • Improve the production efficiency of manufacturing process, reduce water consumption, and increase water recovery rate
  • Promote measures to reduce water consumption and surcharges such as clean production certification, water footprint inventory



Water Risk Management Tool Development

With regard to the water resource issue, besides the continuous implementation of water saving measures, UMC has collaborated with the Department of Bioenvironmental Systems Engineering, National Taiwan University in 2015~2016 to develop the “Water Shortage Warning and Decision Support System for UMC’s Fabs in Hsinchu Science Park and Southern Science Industrial Park.”A seasonal (3 months) water shortage warning system was established to simulate the warning system used in the Water Resources Agency, MOEA. In addition, the seasonal broadcasting data from the Central Weather Bureau was incorporated into the system to offer water supply predictions. With this tool, UMC’s fabs will know in advance about any possible water shortages. By combining with UMC’s water shortage response measures, operation risk can be significantly reduced.





Water Conservation During Manufacturing

UMC’s first principle of water consumption is designing a water conserving process, followed by recovering water for reuse and highly efficient water management. To effectively reduce water resource consumption, all three principles must be integrated. In addition to conserving water, the company also actively participates in the Science Park Administration’s water management indicator formulation and annual manufacturer water conservation counseling and technology exchanges. To ensure a secure water supply, the company also participates in the Water Resources Agency’s water shortage contingency measures for water source stabilization and eutrophication. Impacted by global climate change, UMC strives to promote energy conservation and carbon reduction activities, and include them in its management policy. Hence water conservation and improvement activities are ongoing to provide further opportunities for company growth.



UMC Eight Water Conservation Measures Approach

  1. Develop policy and implement effective water conservation.
  2. Recover resource, and curb and reduce resource use.
  3. Continue to improve and integrate with environmental protection.
  4. Through daily management approaches, achieve management outcome.
  5. Divert wastewater, implement multiple re-use and optimize water efficiency.
  6. Establish water resources management system, compare with water consumption balance diagram and use water rationally.
  7. Integration and sharing of technological resources by the Fab Technical Committee.
  8. Directly incorporate water conservation measures into regulations for newly constructed fabs.



The reduction targets and plans

The reduction targets and plans

Reduction Goal

  • Compared to 2015, reduce intensity of water consumption by 25% in 2025.

2021 Actual Reduction

  • Additional reduction of 304,000 tons of water consumption for the year, reaching the annual targeted goal.



Percentage and Total Water Recycle and Reuse

Due to its past promotion of water conservation, reduction and recycling measures, and its high recovery rate in the manufacturing process, UMC's current water recovery has exceeded the newly increased total water intake. Total water recovery and reuse could reach more than 67% of water intake.


Figure: Percentage of Water Recovery and Reuse to Total Water Withdrawal

2021_recycle_water_en.jpg (39 KB)

I. The base of calculation includes UMC fabs in Taiwan and Singapore.
II. Amount of recovered water is calculated using cumulative flow meter or floating flow meter.
III. Total water withdrawal includes municipal water, condensate water and rainwater.
i. Municipal water: Water meter readings are recorded daily, and annual water amount is calculated based on average monthly water usage.
ii. Condensate water and rainwater: Annual water amount is calculated based on flow meters and estimates.



Water Resources Sharing and Social Participation

In addition to internal water resource assessment and management and active promotion of water conservation, UMC also serves as a representative in industrial unions/associations. The company cooperates with the government and industrial peers in water resources communication and exchange counseling through the following mechanisms:


  1. Water resources communication meetings convened by the Water Resources Agency and manufacturer's associations.
  2. Increased water resources adjustment and coordination by manufacturers and the Water Resources Agency during dry season.
  3. In cooperation with the Water Resources Agency's promotion of reclaimed water construction, UMC plans to use reclaimed water.
  4. Establish a communication platform meeting with the Water Resources Agency to meet future water supply and demand.



Exchange and Counseling with Industry Peers

UMC has participated annually in water conservation coaching sessions within the Science Park since 2002. As of 2021, the program has conducted a total of 219 cases and coached more than 90 companies, sharing the company’s valuable experiences in water conservation with industry peers to reduce the demand for water resources. For example, in 2021, the potential quantity of water saved after coaching was 268,000 tons per year. In 2020, UMC carried out water conservation coaching sessions and tracked the performance of 10 companies, realizing savings of 130,000 tons of water in 2021.



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