Does the Water-Energy Nexus Matter?


As an energy efficiency professional moving into the water sector, I've obviously been interested in the concept of the "water-energy nexus." It's taken some time, however, to think through why the concept is strategic rather than descriptive. Ultimately, the usefulness of looking at how our water and energy needs intersect requires a good deal of planning effort. I hope this post helps to highlight where and why that effort might be necessary.

Water-Energy Nexus as a Description

Getting water requires work, work requires energy, and many forms of energy these days require water. In my specific case, my family uses (on average) about 40 gallons per capita per day (GPCD) of water. With five of us, that's 200 gallons per day. If I were to drive to the headwaters of Barton Spring every day (let's say upstream from the pool, rather than downstream where the dogs hang out), that's a 10-mile drive each way.