our final newsletter in 2012 focusses on UNFCCC COP18 in Doha. Although participation in Doha was much lower than usual at COPs, the gender related activities were manyfold and got lots of attention.
We would like to thank everyone who contributed to the activities. It was great to work with you.
The GenderCC team in Berlin wishes you a happy festive season and new year! We look forward to a fruitul collaboration in 2013.
the GenderCC team in Berlin
As part of the first ever GenderDay at a COP, which was launched by the UNFCCC secretariat for November 27, 2012. GenderCC, WEDO, GGCA and LIFE e.V. co-hosted a special 3-hours side event entitled "Gender and Climate Innovation: Breakthrough changes for gender equality". This collaborative gender event brought about innovative ideas for change, focusing on inclusivity and diversity, and on finance for low-carbon, climate-resilient and gender-equitable development objectives.
The high-level opening discussion welcomed Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary, UNFCCC, Mary Robinson, President, Mary Robinson Foundation – Climate Justice (MRFCJ), and Hon. Albreu, Minister of Environment, Mozambique, with Cate Owren, Executive Director, WEDO as moderator.
Gotelind Alber, Focal Point UNFCCC Women and Gender Constituency moderated the Expert Dialogue and Open Discussion which included the following 6 experts: Yvette Abrahams, GenderCC SA (Africa), Kahealani Hekau, Pacific Gender Climate Coalition), Farah Kabir, Action Aid (Asia), Agnes Otzelberger, CARE International, Liane Schalatek, Heinrich Böll Foundation (USA / Germany), and Farhana Yamin, University College London (UK/EU).
Ulrike Röhr, Focal Point Gender, Environment, Sustainability LIFE moderated the Gender Innovation Hubs, which addressed mitigation, adaptation, climate finance, technology and capacity building.
A report covering the event will be released early January.
Two more events during the GenderDay were organised by the UNFCCC secretariat itself. The first one was the launch of the COP 17/CMP 7 Presidency Legacy Project: Thuto Ya Batho - Women And Climate Change.
The day was concluded with the high level interactive dialogue "Gender and Climate: Moving beyond the Rhetoric", which was hosted by UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres.
Women and Gender NGOs at COP 18 representing hundreds of women’s organizations and women environmental leaders around the world demanded real action from the Global North in the UN Climate Talks on December5.
The action and an open letter decried the lack of sincere and effective actions on the part of the countries from the Global North and said that the COP has no legitimacy to speak on behalf of the people of the world unless they make real progress.
As usual, various interventions were held by representatives of the Women and Gender Constituency.They recognized that efforts have been made, but much work were still needed and expressed their concerns.
In their interventions, women called for
IUCN and GGCA launched the publication "The art of implementation. Gender strategies transforming national and regional climate change decision making". It showcases gender-responsive climate change frameworks developed through multi-stakeholder processes in 11 countries and regions around the world.
The EU introduced a draft decision promoting gender balance (in the draft the wording was 'gender equality') in the UN climate negotiation process. The decision "Promoting gender balance and improving the participation of women in UNFCCC negotiations and in the representation of Parties in bodies established pursuant to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol" was adopted by the COP on December 7, 2012.
Besides strengthening the participation of women in bodies and delegations, the decision requests the Secretariat to report on female participation and forward this information to the COP on an annual basis in order to enable the tracking of progress towards the goal of gender balance and gender sensitive climate policy.
Finally, the decision requests the Secretariat to convene a workshop at COP19 to discuss gender responsive policies and strategies to advance gender equality in climate decision-making.
Momentum for Change: "Women for Results" will showcase women-led activities that address climate change in developing countries. These “lighthouse activities” will demonstrate measurable impact on the ground, and the potential for replicability and scaleability at the local, national and international levels.
Criteria for the selection process:
1. The activity seeks to address increasing resilience to, or mitigating climate change by focusing on the role of women in communities and their capacity to make change;
2. The activity empowers women in their role with the potential to improve their livelihoods and that of their families and communities;
3. The activity has already been implemented and is currently delivering concrete results in the area of increasing resilience to, or mitigating, climate change;
4. The activity is scalable, replicable and demonstrates elements of innovation;
5. The activity is not associated with the UNFCCC’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) or Joint Implementation (JI) schemes.
Applications will be accepted beginning 8 March 2013, International Women’s Day.
However welcome the Decision on Gender Balance, GenderCC expresses its deep disappointment at the watering down of the wording, from the initial insistence on gender equality to its present position on gender balance. Gender balance, though important from an equity and human rights perspective, falls far short of the substantial gender equality needed to accomplish fundamental changes in human behaviour. Gender equality moves us beyond the numbers to deal with issues of substantive equality. Substantive equality would require us to begin to rephrase both climate science and climate politics from a gendered perspective, making true empowerment of women an issue.
GenderCC is also disappointed by the overall outcomes of Doha. Yvette Abrahams of GenderCC South Africa: “How useful gender parity will be in the absence of a highly ambitious legally binding agreement, proper pledges for climate finance which match the anticipated need, as well as real progress on loss and damages, is a question which we need to ask ourselves.”