A Design-led FEWW Nexus Approach For Qatar University
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Demographic explosion, climate change, urbanization, change of life quality, and food demand have put extra pressure on Food, Energy, Water, and Waste (FEWW) resources.A special focus has been placed on university campuses as they are representative urban communities with a substantial need for food, energy, and water and they generate waste. Furthermore, universities can be models for the community as they can apply and disseminate new ideas. The case study of the Qatar University via the Doha Living Lab (DLL) generates ideas and gives solutions to the FEWW Nexus through urban agriculture practices adopted to the climatic conditions of Qatar. The DLL follows the M-NEX Design method consisting of three steps: Design Development, Design Evaluation, and Implementation by engaging stakeholders and the local community. The areas of the DLL increase food production on the campus while minimizing the use of energy and water, enhance biodiversity as well as soil quality by valorizing food waste. The carbon footprint of DLL is reduced by 2% when the same quantity of food is produced locally than imported. This applies when 75% of the energy needs come from renewable sources, 75% of the needed animal feed comes from bio waste, and finally, when novel greenhouse technologies are utilized with low energy consumption. According to the research results, the FEWW Nexus and food production on campus can be sustainable in terms of low carbon footprint with minimal resource use, use of renewable energy sources, and food waste valorization.