event 16 Jun 2021

Report // Water–Energy–Food Security–Ecosystems in Africa. Science Behind the Debate

By the Joint Research Centre (JRC), the European Commission’s science and knowledge service. In the technical report 'Water–Energy–Food Security–Ecosystems in Africa', JRC presents the findings, conclusions and recommendations arising from the various activities on the WEFE Nexus in Africa. This publication deal in more detail with topics of particular relevance in Africa and which complement the technical report.

Water Energy Food Security Ecosystems in Africa


This report summarizes the main findings of the different activities that the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission and the different partner institutions are conducting within the framework of the Water Energy Food Ecosystem nexus analysis in sub-Saharan Africa.

After introducing the topic, the priorities and needs identified by the African institutions, and illustrating the response of the European Commission and its partners, the report illustrates the past and current state of the WEFE nexus dynamics in the region. It identifies the main challenges that the interconnected sectors within the nexus are likely to face in the coming decades. In particular, the region is expected to be strongly affected by global climate change affecting African regions unevenly and by rapidly changing socio-economic and demographic dynamics. These topics are analysed in a general way for the sub-Saharan macro-region, but also through specific case studies carried out jointly with the AUDA-NEPAD African Centres of Excellence on Water Science and Technology, in collaboration with AMCOW, AUDA-NEPAD, regional economic committees and river basin authorities. Concretely, WEFE nexus analyses are presented for the Senegal, Blue Nile and Lake Victoria, Zambezi, and Niger Basins, with particular focus on the main challenges related to water management and the application of the WEFE nexus approach. Challenges with regard to integrated water management are thoroughly discussed and then structured in a set of concluding messages, followed by a set of policy recommendations drafted from the interaction between the scientific community and the institutional environment involved in water management across the sub-Saharan African region.


Water–Energy–Food Security–Ecosystems in Africa. Science Behind the Debate. Editors: F. Farinosi, E. Crestaz, A. Mishra, P. Marcos-Garcia, M. Pastori, A. Amani, C. Carmona-Moreno. Publications Office of the European Union, Italy 2021 - JRC124470, JRC124436, JRC124454, JRC124435, JRC121584, JRC124455, JRC120667




Water–Energy–Food Security–Ecosystems in Africa. Science Behind the Debate

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