Chapter 12: Water-energy-food nexus approaches and initiatives in Africa
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The water-energy-food (WEF) nexus has received much attention in recent years. It is especially applicable throughout Africa as much of the continent is extremely susceptible to water and food insecurity, inadequate energy provision, climate variability, a growing population, and poor management of governance capabilities. Despite a growing number of WEF nexus literature there is no overall stock-taking of WEF nexus approaches on the continent. This chapter reviews the WEF nexus related literature to better understand its use and effectiveness on the continent. Using web-based search tools, of 90 African papers that had WEF nexus content, only 51 showed a clear connection to all three sectors. Using these 51 papers, five clusters of technology were identified as irrigation, hydropower, renewable energy, water, and land management. Most papers identified negative trade-offs (less so synergies) across sectors, and as such, future WEF nexus research should also address synergies and more local-level based solutions.

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