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Open AccessArticle

Making the Water–Soil–Waste Nexus Work: Framing the Boundaries of Resource Flows

1
Water Resource Management Unit, Institute for Integrated Management of Material Fluxes and of Resources (UNU-FLORES), United Nations University, 01067 Dresden, Germany
2
Department of Human Dimensions of Global Change, Global Change Research Institute (CzechGlobe), Czech Academy of Sciences, 603 00 Brno, Czech Republic
3
Department Water, Environment, Civil Engineering and Safety, University of Applied Sciences Magdeburg-Stendal, Breitscheidstr. 2, D-39011 Magdeburg, Germany
4
inter 3 GmbH Institute for Resource Management, 10585 Berlin, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work and are considered to be co-first authors.
Sustainability 2017, 9(10), 1881; https://doi.org/10.3390/su9101881
Received: 29 June 2017 / Revised: 13 September 2017 / Accepted: 11 October 2017 / Published: 19 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food-Energy-Water Nexus: Towards New Thinking and Action)
The Sustainable Development Goals have placed integrated resources management, such as integrated water resource management, at the heart of their targets. The upcoming “International Decade for Action—Water for Sustainable Development”, 2018–2028 has highlighted the importance of promoting efficient water usage at all levels, taking into account the water, food, energy, and environmental nexus. While integrated resource management approaches have been defined and applied for decades, nexus approaches are more recent. For these latter approaches to be implemented on the ground, their system boundaries need to be clarified. While the Water–Energy–Food Nexus focuses on sectors, the Water–Soil–Waste Nexus addresses linkages between environmental resources—namely water, soil and waste—to tackle sustainable management. In this paper, we analyzed integrated management systems and how their system boundaries are defined. From this we determined that in order for system boundaries to be applicable, they should be clear, wide and flexible. Based on this, we propose the boundary of the Water–Soil–Waste Nexus system. We use two case studies to exemplify the usefulness of these system boundaries. View Full-Text
Keywords: integrated water resources management; integrated natural resources management; integrated solid waste management; Water–Energy–Food Nexus; boundary integrated water resources management; integrated natural resources management; integrated solid waste management; Water–Energy–Food Nexus; boundary
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Avellán, T.; Roidt, M.; Emmer, A.; Von Koerber, J.; Schneider, P.; Raber, W. Making the Water–Soil–Waste Nexus Work: Framing the Boundaries of Resource Flows. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1881.

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