Food-Energy-Water Crises in the United States and China: Commonalities and Asynchronous Experiences Support Integration of Global Efforts


Jie Zhuang, Huihui Sun, Gary, Sayler, Keith L. Kline, Virginia H. Dale, Mingzhou Jin, Guirui Yu, Bojie Fu, Frank E. Löffler


Food, energy, and water (FEW) systems have been recognized as an issue of critical global importance. Understanding the mechanisms that govern the FEW nexus is essential to develop solutions and avoid humanitarian crises of displacement, famine, and disease. The U.S. and China are the world’s leading economies. Although the two nations are shaped by fundamentally different political and economic systems, they share FEW trajectories in several complementary ways. These realities place the U.S. and China in unique positions to engage in problem definition, dialogue, actions, and transdisciplinary convergence of research to achieve productive solutions addressing FEW challenges. By comparing the nexus and functions of the FEW systems in the two nations, this perspective aims to facilitate collaborative innovations that reduce disciplinary silos, mitigate FEW challenges, and enhance environmental sustainability. The review of experiences and challenges facing the U.S. and China also offers valuable insights for other nations seeking to achieve sustainable development goals.

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Zhuang J, Sun HH, Sayler G, Kline KL, Dale VH, Jin MZ, Yu GR, Fu BJ, Loffler FE. 2021. Food-Energy-Water crises in the United States and China: Commonalities and asynchronous experiences support integration of global efforts. Environmental Science & Technology 55:1446-1455.