The water-soil-waste Nexus Approach requires a holistic understanding of the interlinkages of environmental processes, along with global change and socioeconomic aspects. Exploring these interlinkages and advancing an integrated management approach require integrated modelling tools.
However, no single modelling tool is available that covers all processes, interactions, and drivers related to water, soil, and waste resources. Instead, a vast number of models are available and in use dealing with particular processes related to water, soil, and waste at varying degrees of detail, covering certain spatial and temporal scales, and applying different mathematical process-describing relationships.
Instead of developing a tool from scratch that addresses nexus-oriented questions and management issues, it is more efficient to make use of available tools and modify them as required. Making use of existing tools, the UNU Institute for Integrated Management of Material Fluxes and of Resources (UNU-FLORES) recently developed and launched the Nexus Tools Platform (NTP).
Continually being improved, the NTP aims to provide detailed information on a selection of available modelling tools. For this subset of available models, key features and parameters have been compiled based on model descriptions provided on respective model websites, manuals, publications, and by model developers.
When looking for particular features or processes to be considered in any nexus-related modelling exercise, the NTP allows selecting and deselecting features and processes in interactive charts. Besides interactive charts, the NTP offers advanced search and filter functions that allow identifying the most appropriate model(s) for the specific needs and to do a gap analysis of current model capabilities.
For more information on the NTP, see the news story on the UNU-FLORES website.