2018 Edition, Scopus 2019

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Policy and Practice Reviews ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Environ. Sci. | doi: 10.3389/fenvs.2019.00084

Can the implementation of the Water-Energy-Food Nexus support economic growth in the Mediterranean region? The current status and the way forward.

 Vasileios Markantonis1*, Reynaud Arnaud1, Armagan Karabulut1,  Rana El Hajj2, Dogan Altinbilek3, Ibrahim Awad4,  Adrianna Brugemann5, Constantianos Vangelis6,  Jaroslav Mysiak7, Nicola Lamaddalena8, Mohamed S. Matoussi9,  Henrique Monteiro10, Alberto Pistocchi1, Ugo Pretato11, Naser Tahboub12, İsmail K. Tunçok13,  Unver Olcay14, Remco Van Ek15, Bárbara Willaarts16, Sönmez Bülent17, Turan Zakir18 and Giovanni Bidoglio1*
  • 1Joint Research Centre (Italy), Italy
  • 2American University of Beirut, Lebanon
  • 3Middle East Technical University, Turkey
  • 4Al-Quds University, Palestine
  • 5The Cyprus Institute, Cyprus
  • 6Global Water Partnership-Mediterranean (GWP-Med), Greece
  • 7Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, Italy
  • 8International Centre for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies, Italy
  • 9Tunis University, Tunisia
  • 10University Institute of Lisbon (ISCTE), Portugal
  • 11Studio Fieschi & Soci Srl, Italy
  • 12Union for the Mediterranean (UfM), Spain
  • 13Solaris Engineering and Consulting, Turkey
  • 14Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (Italy), Italy
  • 15Deltares, Netherlands
  • 16International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Austria
  • 17Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock, Turkey
  • 18Ministry of Forestry and Water Affairs, Turkey

Water resources is a crucial environmental good for the function of the human societies and the ecosystems. Moreover, water is an important input for the economy and an indispensable factor for economic growth. Especially in regions that are facing water scarcity, the adoption of water management policies and approaches fostering the sustainable use of resources while promoting economic growth becomes an emerging issue. The Mediterranean region is one of the most vulnerable regions regarding the availability of water resources due to climate change and human activities. The Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus offers an integrated approach analyzing the synergies and trade-offs between the different sectors in order to maximize the efficiency of using the resources, whereas adapting optimum policies and institutional arrangements. The Mediterranean is a region where we observe a large spectrum of issues emanating from water pollution and natural resource degradation to water scarcity, large amounts of food loss and waste and increasing demand for energy and food. Agricultural practices, urban development, demand management for water, and protection of ecosystems, particularly aquatic ecosystems, are areas of particular intervention available to the decision-makers in enhancing availability of water for the various water using sectors. In this context, the current policy note paper aims to address a major issue: how can the implementation of the WEF Nexus support the economic growth in the Mediterranean? Based on the outcome of an experts and stakeholders regional workshop, this paper presents the current status, including the opportunities and the practices of applying the WEF Nexus in the Mediterranean and draws specific recommendations for the way forward. Regarding the later, the strengthening of WEF Nexus in the Mediterranean requires a set of interventions to strengthen the institutional capacities, to enhance the finance mechanisms, to support the intra-regional dialogue as well, to enhance data collection and management, as well as to implement economic instruments and integrated economic approaches to measure the impact of Nexus into economy and employment.

Keywords: WEF nexus, economic growth, policy, Practice, mediter ranean

Received: 23 Jun 2018; Accepted: 27 May 2019.

Edited by:

Jill A. Engel-Cox, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (DOE), United States

Reviewed by:

Nidhi Nagabhatla, United Nations University Institute for Water Environment and Health, Canada
Marcos Callisto, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil  

Copyright: © 2019 Markantonis, Arnaud, Karabulut, El Hajj, Altinbilek, Awad, Brugemann, Vangelis, Mysiak, Lamaddalena, Matoussi, Monteiro, Pistocchi, Pretato, Tahboub, Tunçok, Olcay, Van Ek, Willaarts, Bülent, Zakir and Bidoglio. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence:
Dr. Vasileios Markantonis, Joint Research Centre (Italy), Ispra, Italy,
Mr. Giovanni Bidoglio, Joint Research Centre (Italy), Ispra, Italy,