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Journal Article

A systematic analysis of Water-Energy-Food security nexus: A South Asian case study


Putra,  Muhammad Panji Islam Fajar
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;


Pradhan,  Prajal
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;


Kropp,  Jürgen P.
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;

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Putra, M. P. I. F., Pradhan, P., Kropp, J. P. (2020): A systematic analysis of Water-Energy-Food security nexus: A South Asian case study. - Science of the Total Environment, 728, 138451.

Cite as: https://publications.pik-potsdam.de/pubman/item/item_24056
Most South Asian countries have challenges in ensuring water, energy, and food (WEF) security, which are often interacting positively or negatively. To address these challenges, the nexus approach provides a framework to identify the interactions of the WEF sectors as an integrated system. However, most nexus studies only qualitatively discuss the interactions between these sectors. This study conducts a systematic analysis of the WEF security nexus in South Asia by using open data sources at the country scale. We analyze interactions between the WEF sectors statistically, defining positive and negative correlations between the WEF security indicators as synergies and trade-offs, respectively. By creating networks of the synergies and trade-offs, we further identify most positively and negatively influencing indicators in the WEF security nexus. We observe a larger share of trade-offs than synergies within the water and energy sectors and a larger share of synergies than trade-offs among the WEF sectors for South Asia. However, these observations vary across the South Asian countries. Our analysis highlights that strategies on promoting sustainable energy and discouraging fossil fuel use could have overall positive effects on the WEF security nexus in the countries. This study provides evidence for considering the WEF security nexus as an integrated system rather than just a combination of three different sectors or securities.