Water-Food-Carbon Nexus Related to the Producer-Consumer Link: A Review

Elsevier, Advances in Nutrition, Volume 13, 1 May 2022
Wang J., Sun S., Yin Y., Wang K., Sun J., Tang Y. et al.

Clarifying the water-food-carbon nexus is key to promoting the harmonious development of human society and environmental resources. The sustainable development of agricultural production systems is being challenged by water scarcity and climate change. Crop growth and irrigation consume large amounts of water, and greenhouse gases are generated due to processes such as fertilizer application and enteric fermentation. These environmental impacts accompany the agricultural production process and are thus embedded in the entire life cycle of diverse food items; in turn, consumers' food choices indirectly impact water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. Reducing agricultural water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions during food production have become crucial issues in mitigating the projected water, climate, and food crises. From the consumer's perspective, diets vary regionally due to different natural conditions for food production and varying socioeconomic and income levels. This review delves into the interactions between diet and its potential environmental impacts, including water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, in order to support further development of the water-food-carbon nexus.