The Secret to India's Sustainable Success: How the WEF Nexus is Transforming the Nation's Approach to the SDGs
Water, food, and energy are all interconnected areas that are essential for social survival. As a result, in order to comprehend and deal with the issues
that these three sectors and their natural growth face, one must be concerned about them all at the same time. This is known as the water-energy-food nexus framework. The connection or strategy is especially pertinent and important to India, which relies heavily on its water reserves to provide power and ensure food safety and security.
The current pattern of decline in monsoon precipitation due to changing climate are a big concern, as monsoon precipitation water that are held in reservoirs plays a critical role in supplying agricultural, electricity, and drinking water throughout the year. Natural resource management concerns are intricate, multi-layered, and challenging to resolve. The increasing global interest in the Water-Energy-Food nexus offers a prospect for officials and policymakers to employ advanced alterations that promote integrated resource management.
To achieve so, strategies' having cross-sectoral consequences must be deemed at all levels of leadership. The objectives of integrated resource strategy, nevertheless, should acknowledge the lasting limitations of inequitable resource allocation at various levels, ambiguous supply markets, the restrictions of eco-efficiency, and ecological capacity.
The discussion on environmental resource scarcity was lately resurfaced. Various scientific conclusions indicates that civilization has surpassed the earthly boundaries, endangering its own protected functions. Major attributes which typify the new realism of physical and economic insufficiency of key capitals, comprise that of absence of young resource preserves, challenges of abusing added resources, appearance of new customers, instability of resource values and expansion of players in governing capitals.
Understanding and managing the close interconnections between water, energy and food and their reliance and impact on ecosystems will help address the climate crisis. This interconnection is called the “WEF Nexus approach”.
Water, food, and energy are the three most important natural resources for sustaining life on Earth. These three resources are inextricably linked, resulting in a resource-policy nexus. Their lack of security is a hindrance to societal stability and economic development. There are several regions in which the WEF nexus offers conditions of conflict and stress owing to the limited nature of various environmental resources, mixed with a rising increase in need or demand. This is true just as for non-conventional security concerns such as water, food, and energy, which are quickly gaining the importance of a full-fledged security fears. Water, food, and energy are considered as a strategic resource giving out many similar or comparable attributes.
Climate change, ecological degradation, and pollution are the primary environmental concerns threatening India's sustainable development strategy of the water-energy-food framework. Population increase, changes in eating choices, and urbanisation are the key socioeconomic challenges that India's water-energy-food nexus must address. Achieving the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is heavily dependent on how energy, water and food are handled and utilized. Various sustainable development goals are interlinked. For example, SDG 1 or the ‘No Poverty’, SDG 2 or the ‘Zero Hunger’, SDG 6 or the ‘Clean Water and Sanitation’, SDG 7 or the ‘Affordable and Clean Energy’ among other goals are complicatedly linked.
Water and energy security, for example, must be achieved in order to ensure the availability of water and energy for food production and thereby end hunger. Food production and processing, transportation, and consumption, on the other hand, all have an influence on attaining water and energy security. A nexus point of view improves the perception of the inter-dependence around water, energy and food segments and impacts policies on other zones of interest such as climate and biodiversity. Such a framework would make available meeting the growing overall resource demands with no compromise on the sustainability.
A capability-creating agenda for policymakers and decision-makers is necessary to create a better understanding of interlinkages across SDG objectives and targets, laying the framework for integrated strategic planning on SDGs. The implementation of motivation-based financial plan and allocation will identify and value cross-sectoral planning and coordinated activities on priority links.
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Authored by Ajay M Reje, a final year research student at Department of Geopolitics and International Relations, MAHE. His area of interest lies in the SDG’s, Water-Energy-Food Nexus, Climate change and environment in the Asia-Pacific.