Gender Equality Today for a Sustainable Tomorrow

Tuesday 8th March was International Women’s Day, a day that is celebrated across the globe and aims to highlight the achievements made by women and create awareness among women to take a stand for themselves and the fight against gender discrimination.

The United Nations announced their theme for 2022 as “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow”. 

Around the world, events recognised how women around the world are responding to climate change.Advancing gender equality in the context of the climate crisis is one of 

the greatest global challenges of the 21st century.

Women are increasingly being recognised as more vulnerable to climate change impacts than men, this is because;

  • Women constitute the majority of the world’s poor 
  • Women are more dependent on the natural resources which climate change threatens the most

Did you know?

  • 70% of the 1.3 billion people living in conditions of poverty are women. 
  • Women predominate in the world’s food production (50-80%), but they own less than 10 per cent of the land.
  • 80% of those displaced by climate related disasters and changes around the world are women and girls.
  • Climate change may lead to more gender-based violence, an increase in child marriages, and worsening sexual and reproductive health.

As part of International Women’s Day, we spoke to our students about how climate change impacts women and girls?

The climate crisis is not “gender neutral”. Women and girls experience the greatest impacts of climate change, which amplifies existing gender inequalities and poses unique threats to their livelihoods, health, and safety.

Across the world, women depend more on, yet have less access to, natural resources and in many regions, women bear a disproportionate responsibility for securing food, water, and fuel. 

When disasters strike, women are less likely to survive and more likely to be injured due to long standing gender inequalities that have created disparities in information, mobility, decision-making, and access to resources and training. In the aftermath, women and girls are less able to access relief and assistance, further threatening their livelihoods, wellbeing and recovery, and creating a vicious cycle of vulnerability to future disasters.

At the same time, women and girls are effective and powerful leaders and change-makers for climate change.

Women and girls are involved in sustainability initiatives around the world, and their participation and leadership results in more effective climate action. There are many women who are at the forefront of climate action.

On International Women’s Day our students learnt about five women who are leading the change regarding climate-action.

These included:

  • Miranda Wang
  • Hindou Oumarou
  • Rachel Kyte
  • Kotchakorn Voraakhom
  • Greta Thunberg 

We have one planet, one chance to save it – and women and girls are leading the charge. 

As we have seen, women and girls are disproportionately vulnerable to the growing impacts of climate change, yet they are also critical advocates, innovators, and decision-makers at the forefront of global climate action and solutions. 

Our students are part of our future, they are the next generation of leaders, policy makers, influencers and change makers. 

On International Women’s Day we celebrated the contributions of women and girls around the world to build a more sustainable and equal future for all. By championing climate action by women, for women, we can ensure that it’s not too late.

Without gender equality today, a sustainable future, and an equal future, remains beyond our reach.