Multi-objective optimisation of constrained food-energy-water-nexus systems for sustainable resource allocation

Omolola A. Ogbolumani, Nnamdi I. Nwulu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


The rising demand for food, energy and water amidst depleting supplies and increased environmental degradation is a significant problem in today's world. The concerted occurrence of climate change, human hostilities, poverty increase in several countries and a pandemic outbreak have all contributed to the global challenge of food insecurity. Sustainable management of the three essential resources requires a paradigm shift from a singular and separate approach where each of the resources is independently treated to a multi-dimensional approach that recognises the interconnectedness of the resources, referred to as the Food-energy-water-nexus (FEW-N). A critical and holistic study of optimum interconnections in the FEW-N within social, environmental and economic framework is required. The paper leverages on multi-objective sustainable land use allocation models, integrated with energy and water resource allocation challenges in the food sector, taking cognisance of the FEW-N. Result validation was carried out under different scenarios within the South African context. The results demonstrate the robustness of the developed optimisation framework in introducing optimality amongst multiple objectives while exploring the trade-offs amidst competitions. Furthermore, results show that sustainable management of territorial and natural resources enhances food security amidst depletion of resources.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100967
JournalSustainable Energy Technologies and Assessments
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021


  • Food security
  • Food-energy-water-nexus
  • Land use allocation
  • Multi-objective optimisation
  • Renewable energies
  • Sustainable development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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