FAFS presence was exceptional at the Water Future conference Towards a Sustainable Water Future in Bengaluru, India (September 25). The international conference was organized by the Sustainable Water Future Program and aimed to address new frontiers in water system diagnostics and discuss innovative solutions to mitigate the 21st-century global water crisis.
Dean Mohtar organized a special session on bridging the social and physical sciences to address the interconnected water, energy, and food (WRF) security challenges: Innovatively addressing WEF challenges. He spoke about water, energy, and food securities that are central to healthy, sustainable economies. Growing pressures to meet water, energy, and food demands are driven by rising global populations, rapid urbanization, changing diets, and economic growth. These pressures are intensified by the increasing interdependencies between tightly interconnected resource systems. Dr. Mohtar states that “unless we account for the interdependencies and the potential trade-offs as we plan for the future distribution of resources, we risk the unintended consequences likely to result from addressing a singular set of challenges and thereby creating others”.
The Water-Energy-Food nexus research community has a unique opportunity to leverage the momentum toward achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As nations work towards this purpose, they must be aware of the extent of their interconnectedness and the potential of competition between them. In order to ensure arrival at the goals by 2030, without such unintended consequences, action plans must be developed that promote an understanding. Dean Mohtar and his research team have worked from Qatar through the Middle East, to Asia and Europe; they recently concluded a case study in San Antonio, Texas. The WEF nexus is critical to the creation of water safety, particularly across semi-arid areas where cautious water use is imperative. The nexus approach also provides opportunities to use the concept in alleviating the effects of climate change. The session was followed by a Q&A session (click here).