Water-energy-food nexus

This theme focus on analysing how global change affects the links between the water, energy and agricultural sector. We especially address the question how future changes in climate and water demand affect trade-offs and synergies between water for energy, food and environment. To address these issues we develop integrated water modelling systems combined with large scale observational databases on water demand, availability and quality.

Aspects of global change that we highlighted are changes in water demand, land use and climate. Currently we are working on how future changes in water systems affect the competition for water between the energy, agricultural and environmental sectors. In the agricultural sector, we focus mostly on irrigated water demands and within the energy sector we focus on water for hydropower and biofuels and cooling water needs of thermoelectric power plants. To improve trade-off analyses and assure that future water use is sustainable it is necessary to also quantify the water needs for the environment. To do this we developed an improved method for quantifying large environment flow requirements. The aim is to include this quantification in our modelling systems to improve water use analyses and to develop improved future water and land use scenarios.

The result of our modelling assessments are used to develop climate information services at different spatial scales and for a wide range of users. Our climate information services are developed in close collaboration with users and a wide range of other partners.