Nexus Conference 2014 abstract suggestions

The Nexus Conference 2014 (3-7 March) is gaining pace Liz Thompson former Barbados Energy and Environment Minister is a confirmed speaker with Adnan Amin Director General of IRENA and expect additional announcements in the next week. 

The agenda was announced a few weeks ago and will have 8 plenary sessions and Nexus dating :-)

To help the Advisory Board and Secretariat have come up with some areas that we think would be interesting abstract areas - these are only suggestions but if you are doing work in these areas do submit by November 1st details on how are on the Conference web site.
Abstract suggested areas

These are suggested areas for possible abstracts. They do not represent what will be chosen but areas that we will be looking at next year in the future.

The nexus approach requires systemic thinking and a quest for integrated solutions to guide our decision-making about resource use and development and move to a more sustainable planet  
Urban Challenges of the Nexus: Local and Global perspective
The world has passed the second wave of urbanization with more than 50% of the population now living in urban areas which is expected to rise to 60% by 2030. The challenge for providing increased food, water and energy is huge and interlinked
  •  What is the potential for urban agriculture and urban water reuse?
  •  What are the challenges for urban energy and water supply under increased climate change?
  •  What are policy makers doing to address the needs of cities of the future?
  •  What are the drivers for sustainable urban development through a Nexus lens?
  •  How can city utilities work together to reduce waste?
  •  How well do cities ensure the protection of ecosystems and watersheds necessary for water supply?
  •  How do we address Nexus pressures through urban planning?
  •  What can be done to build resilience of the Nexus?

Nexus perspectives: Water, Energy and Climate  
Water and energy are a symbiotic relationship. All types of energy provision consume water, and water supply and sewage disposal require energy. Explore traditional and alternative energy sources and the challenges and opportunities moving forward
  • What role do Dams play in the Nexus? Are we measuring impacts and benefits correctly?
  • Consumer behaviour: What’s the tipping point for reducing water and energy use?
  • What can be done to reduce water use in solar provision?
  • Biofuels and water use: complementary or competition?
  • What can be done to improve water and energy efficiency in irrigation?
  • Fracking: a challenge or opportunity for energy and water management?
  • How do rising US energy demands affect water supply?
  • What can we learn from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster?
  •  What are practical solutions to increase water efficiency in energy production?
  •  What are the innovations in managing the agriculture-groundwater and energy nexus?
  •  Are there different approaches to managing energy and water supply in different regions?
  • Biofuels: how do we identify opportunities and manage risks in developing countries?
  •  Are we measuring the right impacts and trade-offs?
  • Power asymmetries – how the nexus reveals power dynamics between sectors

Nexus perspectives: Water, Food and Climate
Agriculture is one of the dominant water users in the US and abroad. Understanding how to conserve water and reuse water can have a dramatic effect on water availability and food production in the future.
  •   How can we safely use wastewater in food production?
  • Irrigating from the sky: Is rainwater harvesting a viable solution to adaptable to water resource management at a large scale?
  •  How are women and girls influenced by resource depletion?
  •  Population growth: addressing pressures on water, food, and energy supplies.
  •  What are the key challenges for soil retention and water use?
  •  How can we minimize food and water waste at the consumer and producer level?
  •  Water for food: managing as climate change impacts.
  •  What are the implications of climate change on fisheries within inland waters?
  •  Efficient agriculture: how can energy use be reduced?
  •  Policy challenge: sustaining US Water Aquifers while exporting food abroad?
  •  Eating and drinking in the future: How do we provide for billions more people?
  •  How can integrating sanitation and bio-waste management address local energy production and food security?
  •  What are climate changes implications for livestock and their need for water?
  •  What are the drought preparedness and planning in the US to deal with lose of agriculture production?
  • What can be done to improving resource use efficiency for food security in a changing climate? What are the implications of the climate-water-food-energy nexus to Africa?
  •  What can be done to improve the water and energy efficiency for food production through irrigation?
  •  Mega producers: Collaborating around water-food-energy Nexus

Natural Resource Security for People: Water, Food and Energ
As the challenges for water, energy and food become greater the competition for these resources will also increase. Individuals, companies, and countries need to think critically about resource management and use now and in the future.
  • What are the security implications of climate change on water and food?
  •  What role can Integrated Resource Management a play issue of security and the nexus?
  •  What are the security implications of scarcity in global water?
  •  Thirsty Crops – a security issue?
  •  What are the transboundary challenges of the Nexus?
  •  Are ecosystems the basis of water security?
  •  Energy, Resources, and the Environment: New Security Parameters?
  •  Rethinking Human Security in a Nexus world.

Entrepreneurial Environmentalism and Development

  • What are new innovations in monitoring energy and water use in a climate challenged planet?
  • How can start ups address nexus issues in their business from the start?
  • How can Solar energy production reduce water use and move from boutique to mainstream?
  • Can  CSAs and the local food movement reduce water use: and does small business and farms have an big effect on climate change?
  • How are entrepreneurs driving the renewable energy and water conversation and reality?
  • Venture capital: what is the pulse on investing in nexus (water-food-energy) solutions? 
  • How is grass roots advocacy changing the conversation around Nexus issues?
  • What role can Microfinance play in address nexus challenges in creating new businesses in developing countries: Is there a link?

Nexus Corporate Stewardship: How business is improving resource use

Industry is a great user of water and energy, and major food producer. How can corporations address competitive demand and related resource use? What are corporate best practices in sustainability and “greening” business?
  • Public-private-government partnerships: examples of collaboration for the Nexus approach.
  •  How is biofuel production related to food production?
  •  What can business do to reduce their water footprint in energy provision?
  •  Business water risk – what are the implications for water policy and management?
  • How do companies begin to address nexus issues as business strategy and not just Corporate Social Responsibility?
  • Who is leading the charge around improving corporate environmental practices?
  • What are the investment opportunities surrounding Nexus-related business?
  • How do we calculate financial risk related to water, food, and energy shortages?
  • Techies: What are emerging technologies to address Nexus issues?
  •  What are the elements for successful business approaches to the Water-Energy-Food Nexus?
  • What are the industry and environmental implications for fracking and how can they be addressed?

Financing the Nexus: policy and practice

Often funding is through sectors and if in a more interlinked world how can traditional and new funding be utilized.

1.                  Development bank financing for the Nexus.

     Who’s Paying: The role of multilateral banks in the nexus?
     Lessons for addressing Climate and the Nexus – are there financial tradeoffs to be made?
     What role could the development banks play in protecting financing for Ecosystem Services for the Nexus?
     Drinking Water as a Priority Use of Water in the Context of International Investments in Agriculture
2.                  Foreign and Impact investment for the Nexus

     How can we grow impact investing?
     What role can FDI play in Nexus funding?
     How do we begin to ‘value’ the ecosystems that underpin our supply?
     What are the elements that support the creating of public-private partnership for the Nexus?

3.                  Organizing framework setting out the capital market system structure to address Nexus issues
     How can we generate demand for appropriate behavior by financial institutions?
     How can the markets better relate to sustainable development?
     How can we increase the influence of fund managers voice in influencing flow and cost of capital?
     How can corporate and sovereign debt be utilized?

4.         Role of government and ODA in financing and regulating the Nexus
     What can be done to regulate Water, Food and Energy Futures?
     What could be done to set up a global framework for Nexus sustainability reporting
     What role can ODA play in Nexus funding?


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