2018 Nexus Conference

Thank you for joining us at Nexus 2018, April 16-18th at the Friday Center in Chapel Hill, NC. The draft outcome Message from the Nexus Conference is available here.

Photos from the conference can be viewed here.  No password is required. To download, click on any thumbnail to enlarge. Hover mouse/pointer over top left of enlarged picture. Options will appear. “Original” or “all available originals” is the recommended setting.

Video Messages

Video message: Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on
Climate Change (UNFCCC) (2010-2016)

Video message: Gilbert F. Houngbo, IFAD President (Chair of UN Water)

Video message: Monique Barbut, Executive
Secretary of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)

Video Message: Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator

About the Conference

The “Nexus” approach is the one that focuses on overlaps across sectors while respecting sectoral expertise in order to make better plans by understanding interactions (Stockholm Environment Institute, 2017). The Water Institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill reconvened our Nexus conference addressing Water-Energy-Food and Climate in spring of 2018.

The conference facilitated space for the development of collaborative work and focus on the:

  • Science-policy interface;
  • partnerships;
  • solutions;
  • review of Sustainable Development Goal commitments (2018 and for the Heads of State review in 2019);
  • sharing of tools, indicators and methodologies; and
  • the identification of gaps.

The conference focused on recognizing and respecting the work of sector experts and addressed key challenges that will require a Nexus approach. These include:

  • Agriculture will have to produce 30-50% more food by 2030
  • Primary energy needs will increase by 40% by 2030
  • Demand for water will exceed global availability by 40 % in 2030
  • Surge of 200 million climate change refugees will reverse global healthcare progress by 2050

This was the second Nexus Conference that The Water Institute has organized. The first in 2014 made a significant input to the negotiations for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), through the Chapel Hill Declaration. The 2030 Agenda adopted in 2015 at its heart has 17 SDGs, 169 targets and 232 indicators. It is the blueprint to a more sustainable, fair and equitable world. It is the first global agreement that recognizes the interlinkages between sectors and suggests ways to address them.