women’s stories and climate change

Climate change is already having a disproportionate impact on women, as witnessed in her homeland Bangladesh, says Anushay Hossain. But where are women’s voices and outrage in response to this growing concern?

[…] The scenario in Bangladesh reveals that climate change is real and is already impacting populations and ecosystems around the world. But the case of Bangladesh shows us something more: It’s the world’s poor who will feel the impact of this change the hardest. And women make up approximately 65 percent of the world’s poorest populations, according to the International Labor Organization.

Climate change is already having a disproportionate impact on women, concluded a report released yesterday by The United Nations Population Fund. “The State of World Population 2009,” which focuses on women, population and climate change, also says that women have been largely overlooked in the debate on how to address climate change-related problems, and that success in combating this concern is more likely if policies, programs and treaties consider women’s rights and needs.

This report is more evidence that though the gender angle of climate change will not be part of the agenda at upcoming U.N. Climate Change Conference, which takes place in Copenhagen from Dec. 7-18, it should be. Negotiations leading up to the conference, at which it is hoped an international agreement will be adopted for curbing greenhouse gas emissions, have already hit a wall as developing and developed nations disagree on how to fight climate change. […]

“Feminist Voices Missing in Climate Change Debate”

On “State of World Population 2009”:
State of World Population 2009 – Facing a changing world: women, population and climate

How do population dynamics affect greenhouse gases and climate change? Will urbanization and an ageing population help or hinder efforts to adapt to a warming world? And could better reproductive health care and improved relations between women and men make a difference in the fight against climate change? Find the answers in the State of World Population 2009.

The whole world has been talking about carbon credits, carbon trading and emissions targets. But not enough has been said about the people whose activities contribute to those emissions or about those who will be most affected by climate change, especially women.

The climate-change debate needs to be reframed, putting people at the centre. Unless climate policies take people into account, they will fail to mitigate climate change or to shield vulnerable populations from the potentially disastrous impacts.

From Worldwatch Institute:

[…] One major finding of the report is that cultural, legal, and other barriers, such as poverty, keep women from having a say in the decisions that affect their environments, their families, and their livelihoods—in other words, their lives.
Who is telling the stories of women who are thriving despite the daily challenges they face? On-the-ground, first-person research is what tends to be missing in a lot of publications and news sources these days. […] Worldwatch is placing staff in the field to find out what is really working in agriculture—from policies designed to empower women and communities to innovative ways to produce nutritious food for vulnerable populations.
Nourishing the Planet: Evaluating Environmentally Sustainable Solutions to Reduce Global Hunger and Rural Poverty

More on the report at RH Reality Check

Leave a Reply