Biological Systems Engineering


Date of this Version



Journal of the ASABE (2022) 65(6): 1,343-1,353

doi: 10.13031/ja.15046


Copyright 2022, American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers. Used by permission


A nexus approach contributes to the strategic allocation of resources to secure food, energy, and water for the world population. Integrated models considering the complex interactions across food, energy, and water (FEW) enhance decision-making and strategic planning towards resilience. However, a significant number of the existing integrated models leave unaddressed the inherent variability and uncertainty present in the FEW sectors. Here, we review the importance of characterizing variability over spatial and temporal scales and the importance of decreasing the uncertainty present within a FEW nexus systems. The review also discusses existing modeling tools that address variability and uncertainty on single and paired elements of the FEW nexus systems, as well as integrated tools that address the sources of variability and uncertainty across the nexus. Finally, the review highlights the opportunity to address the limitations of existing models through multidisciplinary approaches and the potential to integrate publicly available models, as has already been the case for single and coupled elements of the FEW nexus. Addressing variability and uncertainty would improve the robustness of a FEW systems modeling and would provide stakeholders with the capacity to make better-informed decisions.