Gender activities leading up to COP18 in Doha

SB36 Meeting, May 2012 in Bonn

The climate negotiations in Bonn were tough: it took almost two weeks of deliberation to finalise the negotiating agenda for the Durban Platform, hailed a 'breakthrough' after the last Conference of the Parties in Durban, and it wasn't until the very last minute that a chair was able to be elected for the Ad Hoc Working Group.

Women and Gender activities:

Within the Women and Gender Constituency particular attention was paid to the first meeting of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP). At the inaugural meeting Yvette Abrahams from GenderCC South Africa made an intervention on behalf of the Constituency, emphasizing the necessity for a stronger commitment to gender equality. The Constituency called for a workshop on gender justice which should be run as part of ADP to underline the link of gender justice and climate change.
Discussions about Article 6 of the convention are related to education, training, awareness rising about climate change, and participation, with the aim of drafting a new work programme. The positions of the Women and Gender Constituency and the Youth Constituency (YOUNGO) were heard in a joint intervention arguing for two important considerations: finance and participation. Only a reliable funding system can ensure the effective implementation of a work programme. Active public participation of women, the youth and indigenous people is also crucial for the work programme to successfully combat climate change.
Capacity building is an issue in all UNFCCC related bodies and working groups. Speaking on behalf of the Women and Gender Constituency, Svitlana Slesarenok from the Ukraine highlighted in an intervention the need for gender-sensitive capacity building especially in economies in transition. Furthermore, she called for a compulsory reporting of gender sensitive capacity building in the 4th review of the implementation of the framework.

Despite the fact that the negotiations were difficult at that time, the awareness for gender aspects was increasing considerably. Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres invited members of the Constituencies to a "Gender Picnic". Apart from being a very lively networking event, it was also an excellent opportunity to communicate the various ideas on how to improve gender recognition in the negotiations in addition to the inclusion of gender and women references in the text. The next step was to 'map' the progress on integrating gender in climate politics and identify the gaps. These activities were from that time on supported by a Gender Advisor, who had been working in the Climate Secretariat since spring 2012, funded by Finland, with the aim of strengthening the gender perspective in the various strains of negotiation.