Will Water Constrain Our Energy Future?
Energy and water security are crucial to human and economic development. The two resources are now more interconnected than ever -- significant amounts of water are needed in almost all energy generation processes, from generating hydropower, to cooling and other purposes in thermal power plants, to extracting and processing fuels. Conversely, the water sector needs energy – mainly in the form of electricity – to extract, treat and transport water. Both energy and water are used in the production of crops, including those used to generate energy through biofuels.
An ESMAP-supported World Bank initiative, Thirsty Energy, aims to mitigate the risks of the water-energy challenge.
One of the key aspects of this initiative is that the energy sector is the entry point for promoting the dialogue and devising solutions and tailors approaches depending on the available resources and institutional and political realities of a country.
The initiative demonstrates the importance of combined approaches through demand-based work in several countries, thus providing examples of how evidence-based operational tools in resource management can enhance sustainable development. This created knowledge will be shared more broadly with other countries facing similar challenges.