At the last day of the Gender and Climate Change training workshop held in Amman, the Jordanian Minister of Environment, H.E. Eng. Khaled Al-Irani called for more pro-active participation by women groups in the lead up to Copenhagen.
“The ministry envisions a stronger role for women in climate talks and this can only be possible through the active participation of women associations and groups in informing policy makers and submitting positions on mainstreaming gender in climate change to move the process forward,” said Minster Al-Irani.
He highlighted the importance of acknowledging that the effects of climate change will most detrimentally affect women. This is due to their role in areas such as agriculture and water where the effects of climate change will be most acutely experienced. Jordan in particular is the 4th most water scarce country in the world and, although not contributing significantly to global emissions itself, will experience the impacts of climate change dramatically, especially as it relates to desertification and water insecurity. Jordan will see a 20% decrease in rainfall in the foreseeable future.
Whilst positions in such submissions may not always be taken onboard by government, the Minister cautioned, it is very important to strengthen advocacy efforts by non-governmental stakeholders so that we can strengthen governance.
“Part of climate change is linked to political will and moral issues, like who is responsible, and who pays for this damage? This is part of the debate between north and south,” said Dr. Odeh Al-Jayyousi, IUCN West Asia Regional Director. “The economic factor is the obsession driving the whole world, therefore it is critical to link climate change with sustainable development.”
The workshop, hosted by the Ministry and conducted by the Global Gender Climate Alliance (GGCA) and IUCN, International Union for Conservation of Nature, saw attendance of sustainable development specialists throughout the West Asian region. All were selected through a competitive selection process attracting over 870 submissions of interest globally.
“It is extremely important to include gender in policy decisions on climate change and to ensure that all policies are gender sensitive – especially in adaptation and the financing thereof,” added Lorena Aguilar, IUCN Senior Global Gender Advisor. “The indicator that will ultimately show that we are serious about including gender in climate talks, is the amount of money we make available to implement the projects necessary to empower women and reduce their vulnerability,” said Aguilar.
The training workshop is the last in a current series held globally ahead of the UNFCCC COP-15 where a post-Kyoto global climate deal will be hammered out. It seeks to enhance participants’ understanding of the links between gender and climate change. In particular, course material focuses on the four thematic areas currently under discussion, namely adaptation, mitigation, technology and finance.
Further information may be obtained from Lorena Aguilar, IUCN Senior Global Gender Advisor on +1 615 521 2523.
Resources & Documents:
Web address: www.gender-climate.org
GGCA Training Manual: www.gender-climate.org/resources.html
About GGCA: The Global Gender and Climate Alliance is a joint initiative working to ensure that climate change initiatives and decision-making at all levels are responsive to the needs of both women and men. Established in 2007, the GGCA’s membership includes 13 United Nations entities and 25 civil society and international organizations. www.gender-climate.org
IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, helps the world find pragmatic solutions to our most pressing environment and development challenges. IUCN works on biodiversity, climate change, energy, human livelihoods and greening the world economy by supporting scientific research, managing field projects all over the world, and bringing governments, NGOs, the UN and companies together to develop policy, laws and best practice. www.iucn.org
About IUCN Regional Office for West Asia (ROWA): IUCN Regional Office for West Asia (ROWA) was established in October 2004 to launch a new and challenging phase of IUCN work in the region. The establishment of the West Asia regional office is considered a turning point in the environmental movement in the region, through linking the environmental work with the development aspects; economical, social and environmental. The West Asia region covers 13 countries including: Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Iraq and Iran. IUCN ROWA works through five thematic programmes including: the Regional Water Resources & Drylands Programme (REWARD); Protected Areas Programme; Poverty, Equity & Gender Programme, Marine Programme and Business & Biodiversity Programme. www.iucn.org/westsia