C40 and Friends of the Earth have published a collection of essays from leading women on the interlinkages between achieving many aspects of the SDGs and empowering women.
The publication features articles on topics including the importance of women in climate policymaking, the impact of gender balance in the renewable energy sector and the importance of girls’ education for a sustainable future.
1 March 2018: To mark International Women’s Day, Friends of the Earth has teamed up with C40 to publish a collection of essays written by pioneering women leaders from around the world, demonstrating the need for women’s empowerment for climate action as well as the powerful change that such empowerment can bring.
Described as “a rallying call – for the planet, for women, for everyone,” ‘Why Women Will Save the Planet,’ features essays on an array of topics, including: the power of stubborn optimism; empowering women to power up the Paris Agreement on climate change; why educating girls is essential for a sustainable future; gender-sensitive National Adaptation Plans (NAPs) in sub-Saharan African countries; the impact of gender balance in the renewable energy sector; the benefits of using a gender lens; the close ties between social and environmental justice; cities, gender and climate change; and more women in business for a sustainable economy.
UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa highlighted the crucial role of women in climate policies and solutions, noting the many barriers that need to be broken down to empower women in these areas.
Featuring leading women’s voices, including former and current UNFCCC Executive Secretaries Christiana Figueres and Patricia Espinosa, respectively, the overall message of the book is that there is no solution to climate change without women’s empowerment. In relation to the New Urban Agenda (NUA), the book considers the essential role of women’s empowerment in turning big cities that may seem “dystopian” into “powerhouses of well-being and environmental sustainability.”
UNFCCC Executive Secretary Espinosa addresses the importance of women’s empowerment in her essay in the book, titled ‘Empowering Women to Power up the Paris Agreement on Climate Change,’ as well as in an address to the Women4Climate conference that took place in Mexico City, Mexico, on 26 February 2018. Noting the importance of women to climate policies and solutions to enhance results and lead to more economic growth and sustainable outcomes, she highlighted that the barriers “that are too often cultural, structural and institutional must be overcome to ensure that women have the voice, agency and authority to fully and effectively contribute to – and benefit from – climate solutions.”
Reporting that more than half of women and girls in urban environments in developing countries live in conditions lacking access to clean water, improved sanitation facilities, durable housing or sufficient living space, Espinosa underscored the crucial nature of women’s participation in making progress on the SDGs, specifically SDG 13 (climate action). Noting the progress that has been made in enshrining gender issues within the Paris Agreement and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), Espinosa also referred to the Gender Action Plan (GAP), adopted at the 23rd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 23) to the UNFCCC in November 2017, which pledges, among others, to advance women’s full, equal and meaningful participation at all levels and to include gender perspectives in the implementation of the UNFCCC, the work of Parties, the Secretariat and UN entities, and at all levels of stakeholder engagement. [Why Women Will Save the Planet] [UNFCCC Press Release] [IISD SDG Knowledge Hub Story on GAP]