Water Energy Food & Ecosystems : the nexus approach to address the SDGs

Organised by GWPO with the support of the French Ministry of Agriculture, a design workshop to build a multicountry initiative was held on the 18th and 19th of May.

Water, energy, food, and ecosystems are essential for meeting basic human needs. But each one is coming under pressure, and climate change is making things worse.

In Africa, people are most at risk if we don’t deal with this challenge effectively. So Global Water Partnership (GWP), International Water Management Institute (IWMI) and African governments are joining forces to tackle water, energy, food, and ecosystems nexus challenges – vital sectors to human development.
Under coordination of the GWP’s network and the great help of IWMI and the CWP in Ethiopia, the workshop gathered 9 countries representatives from Benin, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Lesotho, Malawi, Mali, Nigeria, Sudan, Uganda and Regional organizations representatives from African Union, European Union, NEPAD, IGAD, CILSS, GWP Africa, FAO Africa, IWMI Africa.

The objectives of the workshop were :
1/ To share and agree on objectives and principles for the multicountry initiative on Water Energy Food and Ecosystems nexus ;
2/ To strengthen the knowledge and the capacities of participants on the areas that are key to the development and the implementation of the initiative ;
3/ To identify a detailed 2017-2020 programme based on country proposals and on identified cross cutting needs ;
4/ To establish a detailed road-map including fundraising at country, regional, global levels.

The workshop starts with the presentation by Herve Lejeune, senior expert from the French Ministry of Agriculture, of the synthesis of the countries contributions regarding their priorities among the CFS recommendations.

After 2 intensive days, the community of work established by the 45 people from both water and food security sectors representing a range of situations in Africa agreed on the objectives and ambitions of the 2017-2020 programme of the initiative.The 9 country projects were discussed and reviewed and the synergies and collaboration between participants identified allowing to move further toward a pan African programme, built on and valuing country projects.

Beside the great quality of these preliminary works to build a common programme, the participants’ capacities on Water and Food Security & Nutrition, on UN CFS works and on international project development were highly strengthened.