Figure 1. A conceptual framework showing the possible relationships between WEF challenges, adaptive actions, and the environment.
Urban water, energy, and food (WEF) challenges are among the main barriers to poverty reduction and are some of the central targets of sustainable development goals (SDGs). SDGs seek to improve livelihoods in a sustainable manner through adequate and equitable distribution of the resources. In southern Africa, the scarcity of the resources has escalated due to increased pressure from urbanisation and climate change. This paper focuses on problems of the adaptive strategies that the communities are using in response to WEF challenges as well as the environmental implication of these choices. This article is based on qualitative research methods constituting interview guides administered to 6 city council officials, 2 NGO representatives, 35 households, and 1 Harare residents’ association. Observations were undertaken, and review of secondary data was also done to collect information. Data were collated into a narrative, which was then exposed to qualitative content analysis. Findings reveal the use of underground water in both low- and high-income areas. Firewood and charcoal are preferred for cooking in the low-income suburbs, with gas dominating in the high-income areas. Mobile tuckshops, extensive backyard farming, and open-space agriculture were the prevalent sources of food. Inaccessibility and lack of affordability are some of the identified WEF challenges. Overdependence on underground water lowers the water table, increasing the ecological footprint. Uncontrolled urban agriculture exposes available water sources to pollution.
CitationGandidzanwa, C.P.; Togo, M. Adaptive Responses to Water, Energy, and Food Challenges and Implications on the Environment: An Exploratory Study of Harare. Sustainability 2022, 14, 10260. https://doi.org/10.3390/su1416...
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