Water-Energy-Food-Environment Nexus tools for better climate resilience in Latin America and the Caribbean, one of the focus points of World Water Week – World

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Bridgetown, Barbados – August 30, 2022 – The importance of moving from water-centric resource management to holistic planning and integrated decision-making in the water, energy, water and water sectors. and Environment (WEFE) using innovative connection tools was a key message of the World Water Week Session that the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations ( FAO) co-organized on August 30, 2022 with five other organizations in the region.

In the Caribbean and Latin America, the need to focus on the full value of water to society is becoming increasingly important, as in the rest of the world, as the resource continues to face the challenges of supply and demand. Raising awareness about this was a central goal of the “Focus on the Americas” sessions during the Stockholm International Water Institute’s World Water Week held in Stockholm, Sweden, from August 24 September 1, 2022, in a hybrid online/in-person session. format.

In this context, the FAO Subregional Office for the Caribbean (FAOSLC) has partnered with the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization (ACTO), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the Organization of American States (OAS), RTI International and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) to present regional examples of promising WEFE connection tools for better decision-making at all levels. Highlighting the full value of water to societies in Latin America and the Caribbean requires finding innovative ways to respond to competing sectoral interests and ensure an equitable distribution of resources.

Jacinto Buenfil, policy officer for environment and climate change at FAOSLC and coordinator of the Mexico-CARICOM-FAO initiative ”Cooperation for adaptation and resilience to climate change in the Caribbean”, participated in a panel discussion on the efficient use of water and climate data to inform cross-sector decision-making and shared related lessons from the Water-Energy-Food (WEF) nexus project underway in Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Jamaica and Saint Kitts and Nevis. The agri-food systems of these small island developing states are under severe strain from the declining availability of renewable freshwater resources and heavy reliance on imported fossil fuels to meet growing energy demand.

Buenfil explained that the South-South Cooperation project, funded by the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs (SRE) and the Mexican Agency for International Development Cooperation (AMEXCID), helps beneficiary countries implement solutions and climate resilient practices, including water and energy efficient irrigation. systems for small-scale agriculture, as well as data collection tools and decision support systems for decision makers to improve water and food security in the Caribbean.

In her opening address to the session, Gloria Sandoval, Executive Director for Overseas Project Delivery at AMEXCID, reinforced Mexico’s commitment to help improve living conditions in the insular Caribbean and to increase the resilience of the most vulnerable populations, emphasizing that ”Mexico is and will continue to deeply support the brotherly countries that make up our region.”

During his presentation, Buenfil introduced the audience to the AGRI (AGua para RIego – Water for Irrigation) World Sources tool, a web-based decision support platform. AGRI was developed by the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), now part of the Alliance of Biodiversity International, with financial support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the collaboration technical support with the FAO Investment Center (CFI) and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). The platform, designed for technicians and institutional decision makers, facilitates the planning and design of reservoirs and irrigation systems for small farms. It helps to identify suitable sites for rainwater harvesting or river catchments based on biophysical selection criteria and crop water requirements. As part of the WEF nexus project, officers from the Ministries of Agriculture of the four countries are being trained to use the platform effectively.

Buenfil is convinced that the AGRI World Sources tool has the potential to be scaled up across the region and said, “FAO aims to support small island developing states in the Caribbean to increase the availability and reach of these resilient interventions. to the climate. To do this, we work closely with governments and stakeholders to present funding proposals to international climate and environmental financing mechanisms such as the Adaptation Fund, the Global Environment Facility or the Green Climate Fund. climate.

World Water Week is the leading annual global event for the water and sanitation sector, which explores the value of water to people, economy, development, nature and climate. Guided by this year’s theme “Seeing the Unseen: The Value of Water”, the IDB coordinated 13 region-specific “Focus on the Americas” sessions and seminars, featuring high-level water experts and in sanitation from government agencies, utilities, international organizations, universities, private sector and donor agencies, among others. The aim was to foster cross-regional and cross-sectoral dialogue on innovative financing mechanisms, new experiences in water security, nature-based solutions and other relevant information.

For more information please contact:
Jacinto Buenfil
Environment and climate change officer
FAO Subregional Office for the Caribbean
Email: [email protected]

Marquita Sugrim
FAO National Communications Consultant
FAO Subregional Office for the Caribbean
Email: [email protected]

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