Water-Energy-Food Nexus

High-Impact Opportunity: Water-Energy-Food Nexus

The overall goal of the ‘Water-Energy-Food Nexus’ (WEF nexus) High Impact Opportunity (HIO) is to contribute to the achievement of the SEforALL objectives through better use of the WEF nexus perspective and by fostering synergies between the different sectors. This will include the consideration of the WEF nexus perspective at policy and implementation level in order to ensure improved energy access and energy efficiency, as well as augmented use of renewable energies.

According to Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL), HIOs are “categories of action that have been identified as having significant potential to advance the three objectives of SEforALL:

  • Ensure universal access to modern energy services.
  • Double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency.
  • Double the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.”

Further, HIOs are meant to “serve as a collective forum for stakeholders working on various High Impact Initiatives within the same general area.”




  • Collect and develop approaches for assessing nexus challenges and trade-offs;
  • Exchange on practical experiences between HIO partners, identification of possible synergies;
  • Better integrate the nexus perspective in policies and projects at country level;
  • Document and disseminate knowledge about nexus solutions and best practices (http://www.water-energy-food.org);
  • Provide a platform for engagement with, and between, stakeholders from governments, the financial sector, industry, international organizations and civil society;
  • Promote the integration of the Nexus approach where relevant into energy, water and agricultural policy, planning, monitoring and evaluation.


Highlights of High Impact Initiatives (HIIs):

  • Development of a WEF nexus Assessment Package (lead: Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO));
  • Policy Dialogue, Awareness and Knowledge Dissemination (lead: German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ));
  • Promotion of sustainable integrated food energy systems (lead: FAO);
  • Sustainable energy in emergency and rehabilitation (lead: FAO);
  • Powering Agriculture Energy Grand Challenge (lead: United States Agency for International Development (US-AID);
  • Applying the WEF nexus in the field (lead: Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP);
  • Sustainable energy in food losses and post-harvest technologies (lead: FAO).


Additional partners include the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the World Bank, the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) and IRENA. The HIO is open to other interested partners to join and support. FAO and BMZ hold jointly the co-leadership of this HIO. GIZ supports BMZ in its co-leading function.

For more information about the Water-Energy-Food Nexus, please vist the
NEXUS Platform - The Water Energy Food Security Resource Platform