Delivering on the SDGs through the Energy, Food, and Finance Nexus
The convergence of the pandemic, the worsening effects of climate change, and the structural problems in some countries' economies and societies all came together to cause the world's worst cost-of-living crisis in a generation. As a result, the world is no longer on track to reach the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. According to the United Nations, these crises have impeded progress toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, including Goal 2 (Zero hunger) and Goal 7 (Affordable and clean energy). Directly, by reducing the affordability of energy and food, and indirectly, they have reduced the availability of financing for goal-related investments, thereby diminishing the capacity of nations to achieve the Goals.
TRANSFORMING THE FOOD AND ENERGY SECTORS
Preparing for these will necessitate coordinated transformations of the energy, food, and financial systems that sustainably produce energy and food sufficient for all people. There are two main ways to change the energy and food industries in a way that is good for the environment and, ultimately, everyone. One strategy is diversifying the types and locations of energy and food sources, such as by expanding the role of renewable energy and encouraging local food production. The second objective involves improving resource utilization efficiency, such as by promoting energy efficiency and conservation and reducing food waste. Numerous initiatives in these areas are already underway, including expanding renewable energy-based electricity generation capacity and improving agricultural productivity. However, they are not progressing sufficiently to achieve the SDGs by 2030. Countries should also focus on exploiting synergies across the energy, food, and finance nexus, such as biofuels, using renewable energy in food production, and subsidies for food and fossil fuels.
ENERGY, FOOD, AND FINANCE SECTOR NEXUS
Investing in and embracing technological and financial innovations can help the energy and food sectors make green and inclusive transitions, for example, by increasing the use of renewable energy in food production and processing. Existing technologies enable the cost-effective use of renewable energy in agricultural food production and post-harvest handling and processing. Some examples are solar-assisted irrigation, green cooling to reduce food loss, and agrivoltaics (land usage for both solar energy and crop production). These technologies have the potential to reshape the agricultural industry by reducing carbon emissions, enhancing safety and efficiency, reducing long-term costs, and promoting greener farming. In addition, strengthening multi-stakeholder partnerships across the energy, food, and finance nexuses is necessary to facilitate the development of these strategies. . Realizing the SDGs is essential, as they are necessary tools for addressing the pressing environmental, political, and economic challenges facing the world today. Opportunities to exploit synergies across the energy, food, and finance nexus are required to expedite and improve the achievement of the SDG.
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