University of Oulu

Masaeli, H., Gohari, A., Hasanzadeh Saray, M., & Torabi Haghighi, A. (2022). Developing a new water–energy–food-greenhouse gases nexus tool for sustainable agricultural landscape management. Sustainable Development, 1– 16.

Developing a new water–energy–food-greenhouse gases nexus tool for sustainable agricultural landscape management

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Author: Masaeli, Hourieh1; Gohari, Alireza1; Hasanzadeh Saray, Marzieh1,2;
Organizations: 1Department of Irrigation, College of Agriculture, Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan, Iran
2Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Unit, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3.3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: John Wiley & Sons, 2022
Publish Date: 2023-01-19


A new comprehensive water, energy, food, greenhouse gas (WEFG) nexus index was developed to capture the interrelationships between them. A total of 11 indicators were applied to consider the interplay of resources consumption, productivity, economic issues, and carbon emission as one of the most critical issues regarding sustainable agricultural development. The proposed WEFG index was evaluated for crop pattern optimization. The results showed that the WEFG ranged from 0.162 to 0.658, which were calculated respectively for almonds and rice due to their energy consumption and carbon emission levels. The optimal cultivation pattern based on WEFG leads to 11% and 15.8% reductions in water and energy consumption, even with a 2.3% increase in cultivation area. The estimated profit for optimal pattern based on WEFG decreased by 13.67% due to lower cultivation levels of high-yield crops such as onion and potatoes. However, the optimal cultivation pattern based on the WEFG index has decreased greenhouse gas emissions by 2%, leading to sustainable agricultural management. Therefore, the presented WEFG nexus index can be a practical metric for sustainable planning and management in the agriculture sector.

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Series: Sustainable development
ISSN: 0968-0802
ISSN-E: 1099-1719
ISSN-L: 0968-0802
Issue: Online first
Pages: 1 - 16
DOI: 10.1002/sd.2427
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1171 Geosciences
1172 Environmental sciences
218 Environmental engineering
4111 Agronomy
Copyright information: © 2022 The Authors. Sustainable Development published by ERP Environment and John Wiley & Sons Ltd. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.