Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Agricultural Water Management


The 2018 drought in Sweden prompted questions about climate-adaptation and -mitigation measures – especially in the agricultural sector, which suffered the most. This study applies a water–food–energy nexus modelling framework to evaluate drought impacts on irrigation and agriculture in Sweden using 2018 and 2019 as case studies. A previous water–food–energy nexus model was updated to facilitate an investigation of the benefits of data-driven irrigation scheduling as compared to existing irrigation guidelines. Moreover, the benefits of assimilating earth observation data in the crop model have been explored. The assimilation of leaf area index data from the Copernicus Global Land Service improves the crop yield estimation as compared to default crop model parameters. The results show that the irrigation water productivities of the proposed model are measurably improved compared to conventional and static irrigation guidelines for both 2018 and 2019. This is mostly due to the advantage of the proposed model in providing evapotranspiration in cultural condition (ETc)-driven guidelines by using spatially explicit data generated by mesoscale models from the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute. During the drought year 2018, the developed model showed no irrigation water savings as compared to irrigation scenarios based on conventional irrigation guidelines. Nevertheless, the crop yield increase from the proposed irrigation management system varied between 10% and 60% as compared to conventional irrigation scenarios. During a normal year, the proposed irrigation management system leads to significant water savings as compared to conventional irrigation guidelines. The modelling results show that temperature stress during the 2018 drought also played a key role in reducing crop yields, with yield reductions of up to 30%. From a water–food–energy nexus, this motivates the implementation of new technologies to reduce water and temperature stress to mitigate likely negative effects of climate change and extremes. By using an open-source package for Google Earth®, a demonstrator of cost-effective visualization platform is developed for helping farmers, and water- and energy-management agencies to better understand the connections between water and energy use, and food production. This can be significant, especially during the occurrence of extreme events, but also to adapt to the negative effects on agricultural production of climate changes.


Published in Agricultural Water Management by Elsevier B.V. Available via doi: 10.1016/j.agwat.2022.107734.

This is an open access article under the CC BY license (