Women and Climate Change

Climate change is an issue that needs to be examined by every person, but women are far more effected. Because of women’s position within the family, they rely on natural resources the most. In the poorest countries, women are suffering more when it comes to climate change. Unfortunately, there has been a lack of female representation within policy-making, and this drives that notion home.

In these poverty-stricken nations, resources are scarce which will soon cause a domino effect of issues. “Climate change has a greater impact on those sections of the population, in all countries, that are reliant on natural resources for their livelihoods and who have the least capacity to respond to natural hazards, such as droughts, landslides, floods and hurricanes” (UNFCCC). Women are usually in charge of the domestic chores within the household, including gathering water, food and fuel for cooking and heating the home. Considering the discrimination within these markets, it’s even worse. In developing countries, women only own about 10 to 20 percent of the land, making it even more challenging to have a leg up.

A Policy Change

On top of that, women don’t have the information to prevent further hazards. Everything that has been mentioned in this article directly stems from the policy. Unfortunately, there is an overwhelming inequality between women and men lawmakers across the globe. By first addressing this issue, we will begin to see a change among women’s relationship to climate change.

Adding more women to the climate change discussion and policymaking will help everyone. “Women play a pivotal role in natural resources management…this puts them in a position to contribute to livelihood strategies adapted to changing environmental realities” (UNDP). Because women are so closely dependent on these natural resources, the insights will be invaluable when talking about relief efforts. Men and women have to work together equally to see a change in the way climate change effects all of us. With the recent wave of newly elected women in Congress, it may set a precedent to what could happen in the future. More women have to be at the forefront to enact change. We have already seen those same women introduce a fresh perspective on what an elected official should be like. They are challenging the status quo and introducing progressive ideas to solve old issues in America. We can’t stay the same globally and expect a different outcome; there has to be a change of power.

Climate change is a direct result of some irresponsible tactics on the part of the people inhabiting the earth. Both men and women have to have an equal say in how to stop it. Women are effected far worse because of the inequality of resources, but there is progress being made. According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development who recorded an increase for the advancement of gender equality. We still have not permanently affected growth, but there is hope that this change will occur.