Linking Distributed Optimization Models for Food, Water, and Energy Security Nexus Management

Ermoliev, Y., Zagorodny, A.G., Bogdanov, V.L., Ermolieva, T., Havlik, P. ORCID:, Rovenskaya, E. ORCID:, Komendantova, N. ORCID:, & Obersteiner, M. ORCID: (2022). Linking Distributed Optimization Models for Food, Water, and Energy Security Nexus Management. Sustainability 14 (3) e1255. 10.3390/su14031255.

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Traditional integrated modeling (IM) is based on developing and aggregating all relevant (sub)models and data into a single integrated linear programming (LP) model. Unfortunately, this approach is not applicable for IM under asymmetric information (ASI), i.e., when “private” information regarding sectoral/regional models is not available, or it cannot be shared by modeling teams (sectoral agencies). The lack of common information about LP submodels makes LP methods inapplicable for integrated LP modeling. The aim of this paper is to develop a new approach to link and optimize distributed sectoral/regional optimization models, providing a means of decentralized cross-sectoral coordination in the situation of ASI. Thus, the linkage methodology enables the investigation of policies in interdependent systems in a “decentralized” fashion. For linkage, the sectoral/regional models do not need recoding or reprogramming. They also do not require additional data harmonization tasks. Instead, they solve their LP submodels independently and in parallel by a specific iterative subgradient algorithm for nonsmooth optimization. The submodels continue to be the same separate LP models. A social planner (regulatory agency) only needs to adjust the joint resource constraints to simple subgradient changes calculated by the algorithm. The approach enables more stable and resilient systems’ performance and resource allocation as compared to the independent policies designed by separate models without accounting for interdependencies. The paper illustrates the application of the methodology to link detailed energy and agricultural production planning models under joint constraints on water and land use.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: asymmetric information; linkage; nonsmooth optimization; subgradient; integrated modeling; food-energy-water-land nexus; machine learning
Research Programs: Advancing Systems Analysis (ASA)
Advancing Systems Analysis (ASA) > Cooperation and Transformative Governance (CAT)
Advancing Systems Analysis (ASA) > Exploratory Modeling of Human-natural Systems (EM)
Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR)
Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR) > Integrated Biosphere Futures (IBF)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 24 Jan 2022 07:52
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2022 14:14

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