Latin America regional workshop
Water, energy and food systems are inter-connected and have become increasingly more complex and dependent on one another. A disturbance in one system can destabilise the others - highlighting the need for a 'Nexus-Based Approach'. This requires the water, energy and food sectors to engage in a dialogue and deliberative analysis of river basins, looking for solutions to optimise the inter-dependencies and support the equitable and sustainable allocation of natural resources while balancing environmental, social and economic issues.
The second in a series of three regional "Anchor" workshops (for Africa, Latin America and Asia) was held in Bogotá, Columbia on 24-26 September 2013. Participants were drawn from Latin America and across the water, energy and food sectors. The Nexus Dialogue workshop provided an opportunity to identify the problems and solutions to secure water, energy and food security both across and within Latin American river basins.
The aim of the Latin America Nexus Dialogue workshop was to build on the outputs from the Africa workshop and focus on the optimisation of solutions for water, energy and food security in the region. Workshop participants were encouraged to identify where the barriers to optimisation exist, and look at where and how these have been overcome.
The objectives of the workshop were to:
- Learn from participants about the challenges in applying and integrating best practice, nexus based approaches in river basins for water, energy and food security;
- Support participants in establishing integrated roadmaps to plan for strategic investment in technology and infrastructure solutions (built and natural) for water, energy and food security;
- Motivate participants to take practical steps towards implementing water, energy and food nexus thinking and practices in their basins.
A number of emergent themes ran through the workshop, these included:
- Technology and infrastructure solutions
- Will they work? Will they ever really be implemented at the scale needed?
- Institutional and sectoral silos
- Can they be overcome?
- How to get better engagement by the energy sector in decision making?
- Infrastructure optimization
- How does this happen?
- What needs to be done to make it happen?
- What are the triggers?
- Are there places where this is happening?
Participants from the Bogotá workshop were encouraged to build new coalitions and partnerships for follow-up action in technology, demonstration, investments in built and natural water infrastructure and national-level dialogues on policy and implementation.
The third regional workshop in Asia (March 2014) will build on the outputs of the Latin America Nexus Dialogue workshop. It will focus on the identifying barriers to the implementation of optimised solutions and where and how these have been overcome.