Nexus Guide: How Food, Water and Energy are Connected
How Food, Water and Energy are Connected
From the publication:
"Meet the Nexus, a new guide from GRACE Communications Foundation, shows you how everyday food, water and energy decisions have a profound effect on each other. The guide suggests nine simple choices that you can make to use food, water and energy more sustainably in your daily life - and save some money too!"
The connection between food, water and energy is shown nicely - what should follow is to integrate this thinking in policy making. And since the different policy arenas are so closely connected, those different arenas should potentially be harmonized (environment, energy, agriculture, water, trade, foreign relations, ...).
But here is the press release for the above mentioned report:
In Grocery Aisles, Home Improvement Stores or in the Kitchen, It's Time to Embrace Food, Water and Energy Nexus Thinking
Meet the Nexus distills a complex concept into a simple guide for sustainable living.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEW YORK, NY (January 28, 2014) - 2014 kicked off to a rough start, with drought-stricken farmers, derailed crude oil-transporting trains and continued fights over fracking for natural gas. Today, a new report from GRACE Communications Foundation puts these events into perspective. Meet the Nexus: How Food, Water and Energy are Connected is geared toward helping us all understand what many corporations, think tanks and governments already know: that the often unseen connections between our food, water and energy systems mean that pressure in one area can have huge implications for the other two.
Nexus thinking - approaching decision making with the nexus in mind - accounts for the ways these three systems interact with each other and with everyday human experience. This first such guide written for the public offers simple examples and practical applications that anyone can use to make their food, water and energy choices more sustainable - and cost effective, too.
Nexus issues, including West Virginia's recent coal-related chemical spill contamination of water supplies, are everywhere, but rarely are they framed in terms of why these connections should play a role in the decisions people make in their everyday lives.
The Meet the Nexus guide breaks down the nexus concept into easy-to-digest parts by revealing the hidden connections between food, water and energy in grocery store aisles, at home and in the kitchen. It also highlights how some local governments and small businesses are making good nexus decisions that protect the environment as well as their bottom lines.
"When I tell people that it takes 42 gallons of water to make one slice of pizza, they are surprised," says Kyle Rabin, Director of Programs at GRACE. "We hope this guide leads people to consider the profound effects of our everyday food, water and energy decisions. Readers may never again look at a cheese pizza without recognizing the precious resources that go into it. At the very least, we hope they will think twice before tossing out their leftovers."
As described in Meet the Nexus, the food, water and energy nexus is simply the intersection of these three systems:
- It takes water and energy to produce the food you eat.
- Energy is used to move water to your home, to heat that water and then later, to clean up the water that flows down the drain.
- Water is required to run power plants safely and to produce oil, gas and coal.
- Some food crops are turned into fuel for vehicles.
"Our report breaks this complex idea down to nine simple tips that illustrate how making even one good decision about food, water or energy resources can have a positive impact on the others," says Peter Hanlon, the guide's lead author. "For example, switching off a light doesn't just save electricity because conventional power plants require a lot of water, and so does the production of fuel used at those plants. Consider it more bang for the sustainable-behavior buck."