The Water-Energy-Food Nexus: Relevant Reports, Articles and Research

The Water-Energy-Food Nexus: Relevant Reports, Articles and Research

This list of reports, articles and research that illustrates and documents the Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus. While many of them call out the WEF Nexus specifically, some of them might not have as obvious a connection, so we’ve made those connections for you.

The Food-Water-Energy Nexus

The Energy-Water Nexus

The Food-Energy Nexus

  • The Congressional Research Service:
    Energy Use in Agriculture: Background and Issues
    This report provides baseline information on energy use by the US agricultural sector and touches upon emerging issues and related legislation.
  • The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations:
    Energy Use in Organic Food Systems
    This report analyzed energy use in organic agriculture, in comparison with conventional agriculture, and found that organic agriculture uses less fossil fuel-based inputs and has a smaller carbon footprint than standard agricultural practices.
  • The Webber Group:
    The Nexus of Food, Waste and Energy
    This analysis of how food, waste and energy are connected looks at the production, transportation and storage of food and the energy embedded in food waste, as well as the energy potential of waste streams.
  • Union of Concerned Scientists:
    Renewable Energy and Agriculture: A Natural Fit
    These four fact sheets on renewable energy and agriculture provide information on renewable energy technologies and the rural economic development opportunities they could create.
  • Shima Kheirinejad and Omid Bozorg-Haddad, Department of Irrigation and Reclamation Engineering, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Tehran; Vijay P. Singh, Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering and Zachry Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Texas A&M University; and Hugo A. Loáiciga, Department of Geography, University of California, Santa Barbara:
    The Effect of Reducing per Capita Water and Energy Uses on Renewable Water Resources in the Water, Food and Energy Nexus
    This study uses a dynamic-system model to assess the feedbacks between water, food and energy, while taking into account environmental water needs, at the national level as applied to a five-year period of Iran’s groundwater reserves.

The Food-Water Nexus

  • WWF:
    Rivers of Food: How Healthy Rivers are Central to Feeding the World
    This interactive site outlines four key ways rivers support global food production, including: freshwater fisheries; deltas; irrigation; and flood recession agriculture.
  • Circle of Blue:
    Water & Food
    This collection of stories from Circle of Blue illustrates how the connections between food and water are growing stronger as the population surges toward nine billion people.
  • The Water Footprint Network:
    The Water Footprint of Food
    This issue page describes how the international trade in agricultural commodities also constitutes a trade with water in virtual form.
  • CEO Water Mandate:
    Virtual Water: Its Implications on Agriculture and Trade (2018)
    This paper considers questions of gaps in knowledge, why sustainability matters, and the policy implications of virtual water trade as compiled from a workshop supported by the OECD Co-operative Research Programme, held at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in September 2016.