What do women’s rights have to do with climate finance? Investing in women is one of the most effective ways to advance sustainable development and fight climate change devastation. Taking an in-depth look at the Philippines, WEDO explores the gender dimensions of climate finance at the national level in our latest publication Gender and Climate Change Finance: A Case Study from the Philippines.

Existing conditions and discrimination determine who is most impacted by “natural” disasters. Women are the majority of the 1.3 billion people living in the deepest poverty worldwide, and people in poverty bear the brunt of climate change impacts. They are most dependent on the environment for livelihoods, food, fuel and medicine. Women often lead communities in conserving natural resources, adapting crops to changing soil and climatic conditions, and rebuilding following natural disasters. The feminization of poverty and gendered divisions of labor present clear differences in how climate change impacts women and men, and their respective capacities for coping with and adapting to climate’s changes. And while women tend to bear a disproportionate burden of adjustment to climate change, they contribute less than men to greenhouse gas emissions.

Investing in women is one of the most effective ways to advance sustainable development and fight climate change devastation. WEDO and Heinrich Boell Foundation partnered with Athena Peralta—a Manila-based advocate on ecology, economy and gender—to document the gender impacts of climate change on women in the Philippines and assess how decision-makers at the national-level are addressing gender roles and women’s rights, lives and livelihoods in climate finance policy.

The study concludes with proposals for ensuring women and gender are adequately addressed in national climate financing policies, programs and frameworks. These include:
• Create mechanisms that guarantee women’s equal access to negotiating, developing managing and implementing adaptation and mitigation financing
• Include disaggregated indicators on mitigation and adaptation funds for targeting and monitoring benefits to women
• Develop principles and procedures to protect and encourage women’s access to national adaptation programs and projects
• Conduct gender impact assessments of adaptation and mitigation strategies
• Implement the ‘polluter pays’ and ‘shared but differentiated’ principles
• Ensure mitigation strategies include both financing new, green technologies and development and enforcement of necessary regulations of greenhouse gas emissions

Written by Nadia Johnson, WEDO’s Social and Economic Justice Program Coordinator.

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