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Optimising WEF Nexus projects in Southern Africa
Identifying priorities, integrated planning, and funding strategies for successful implementation
Tailored funding projects: meeting the indivual needs of each country
The WEF Nexus technical working groups collaborated on the development of funding concept notes and proposals to mobilise funds for the implementation of the different projects.
The projects of the territories of Eswatini, Mozambique and South Africa focus on strengthening regional collaboration for the integrated management of the country's water resources, from regional springs to the sea. Additionally, Zimbabwe is preparing a concept note to mobilise funds for a detailed feasibility study to determine the success of the Kondo Chitowe hydropower upcoming project.
Other countries, such as Tanzania and Zambia, are also applying for funding through the International Climate Initiative (IKI), the Adaptation Fund and the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (SEFA) in order to implement sustainable initiatives. Finally, the Government of Madagascar is committed to ensuring that the Ministries of Water, Agriculture and Energy collaborate with the various stakeholders to solve the interrelated challenges in the three sectors of water, energy, and food.
The Nexus Regional Dialogue in Southern Africa Region
The Water-Energy-Food Nexus
The Southern African Dialogue project, co-funded by the European Union (EU), is implemented by the Global Water Partnership-Southern Africa (GWP-SA) in collaboration with the Southern African Development Community (SADC). It promotes the Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus approach within the region to address interdependencies between the sectors and ensure the sustainable management of water, energy and food resources.
The WEF Nexus approach focuses on negotiating trade-offs, inspiring compromises and uncovering synergies to ensure water, energy and food security in the long run. It further promotes policy coherence and cooperation between all three sectors at the regional, local and global level. Since 2020, the Nexus Regional Dialogues Programme in Southern Africa has been working across the region to institutionalise the Water-Energy-Food Nexus in public policy and planning in addition to demonstration projects that demonstrate the added value of the WEF Nexus, capacity building activities and the identification of financing opportunities.
Multilateral Dialogues of the SADC
Moreover, Lesotho is developing a $20 million Green Climate Fund (GCF) to strengthen knowledge and capacity for the implementation of development projects in the country. The 10th SADC Multilateral Dialogue, held Maseru, provided a forum for water professionals and related sectors to discuss pertinent issues on deepening regional integration and poverty reduction in the region. The objective of the forum was geared towards ensuring the region's ability to harness its water resources to contribute to sustainable regional integration, poverty eradication and socio-economic development.
One the one hand, solving these challenges one by one will be costly and time consuming, which is why SADC advocates the need to implement the WEF Nexus. On the other, threats in any of the WEF sectors will have a negative impact on other sectors, such as health. However, in order to ensure all works well it, good coordination is required at all levels, as well as political will, enabling policy environment, balancing trade-offs, and building on synergies to address competing resources use and breaking the silo mentality. It also needs to ensure that gender equality and social inclusion budgeting is integrated into initiatives promoting ecosystem resilience and water, energy, and food security at all levels.