系统梳理水-能-碳复杂关系的概念内涵，认为其本质是水资源、能源以及碳排放在整个产品生命周期过程 中的相互关系。回顾了复杂关系的近今进展，可将评估方法归纳为基于耦合关联视角的评估、基于整体协同视角 的评估、基于风险与韧性视角的评估以及基于土地利用视角的综合评估。在此基础上，建议未来应重点关注 4 个 前沿议题，即基于水-能-碳承载力的国土空间优化研究、水-能-碳视角下资源消耗与经济增长脱钩分析、水-能-碳 复杂关系确定性与不确定性量化分析以及水-能-碳工程措施助力“负排放”，旨在通过水-能-碳系统协同管理推动 绿色高质量发展。
The analysis of the complex relationship between water-energy-carbon is crucial to promoting the green transformation of economy and society. Meanwhile, it is also a major requirement for water security, energy security, ecological and environmental security, and the building of a community with a shared future for mankind. At present, China's water, energy, and carbon emissions are interdependent and mutually restricted, and the contradictions among them are becoming more and more serious, hindering sustainable social and economic development. Besides, in the context of the “carbon peaking and carbon neutrality” target, for many energy consumption fields, it means not only improving the proportion of clean energy from the supply side but also changing the way of energy use and improving energy efficiency from the user side. However, whether the energy transformation will lead to an increase in water demand needs further study. China is one of the world's largest users of water resources, energy consumption, and greenhouse gas emissions. Clarifying the complex relationship between water resources, energy and carbon emissions will help ensure China's high-quality development, ecological progress, and comprehensive ecological and environmental improvement as scheduled. Based on this, the conceptual connotation of the complex relationship of water-energy-carbon is systematically sorted out and it is believed that its essence is the relationship between water resources, energy, and carbon emissions in the entire product life cycle process. Reviewing the recent progress of complex relationships, the evaluation methods can be summarized into the evaluation based on the perspective of coupling and association, perspective of overall synergy, the outlook of risk and resilience, and the comprehensive perspective of land use. In addition, it is suggested that the following four frontier topics should be focused on in the future: Research on the optimization of territorial space based on water-energy-carbon carrying capacity, and on the premise of not exceeding the carrying capacity of resources, effectively build a territorial spatial pattern system conducive to supporting the implementation of the "carbon peaking and carbon neutrality" strategy; Clarify the decoupling effect and driving relationship between resource consumption and economic growth, and promote the realization of truly SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals); Establish an appropriate evolution model for the certainty and uncertainty of the water-energy-carbon complex system, and realize the dynamic simulation and evaluation of the complex system from multiple perspectives and scales; Realize “negative emissions” through water-energy-carbon engineering measures, including ocean fertilization, green energy production, enhanced rock weathering, increased soil carbon sequestration, coastal wetland restoration, etc. This research aims to achieve the coordinated and sustainable development of the water-energy-carbon system through systematic governance and scientific management and control.