Gender and Climate Change

Gender and Climate Change

Climate change threatens to erode human freedoms and limit choice, and gender inequality intersects with climate risks and vulnerabilities. Women in developing countries have limited access to resources; restricted rights, limited mobility and a muted voice in shaping decisions make them highly vulnerable to climate change. The nature of that vulnerability varies widely, but climate change will magnify existing patterns of inequality, including gender inequality. Women play an important role in supporting households and communities to mitigate and adapt to climate change. Across the developing world, women's leadership in natural resource management is well recognized. For centuries, women have passed on their skills in water management, forest management and the management of biodiversity, among others. Through these experiences, women have acquired valuable knowledge that will allow them to contribute positively to the identification of appropriate adaptation and mitigation techniques, if only they are given the opportunity.

Related Publications and Resources

  • Africa Adaptation Programme Experiences: Gender and Climate ChangeApr 16, 2013Africa Adaptation Programme Experiences: Gender and Climate ChangeThis is the first edition of the Africa Adaptation Programme (AAP) Discussion Paper Series. This paper focuses on the links between gender and climate change adaptation by highlighting the steps that the AAP is taking to ensure the equal participation of women and all members of society in responding to climate change.

  • Sep 1, 2008Climate Change at UNDP: Scaling Up to Meet the ChallengeThe paper presents UNDP's strategy to support the efforts of developing countries and vulnerable groups for scaling up mitigation and adaptation action to successfully meet the climate change challenge and achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

  • Gender Adaptation FundNov 1, 2010Gender Adaptation FundThis short flyer explores the gender dimensions of climate finance mechanisms, focusing on the Adaptation Fund, its creation and its mandate. It addresses the challenges of designing and implementing climate change adaptation programmes in vulnerable countries and provides status to date on gender and suggestions for moving forward.

  • Gender Clean Development MechanismNov 1, 2010Gender Clean Development MechanismThis short flyer explores the gender dimensions of climate finance mechanisms, focusing on the Clean Development Mechanism. If utilized properly, the CDM can promote sustainable development in host countries by bringing new technologies into communities, which often leads to employment opportunities and environmental benefits (e.g., improved air quality or decreased waste).

  • Gender Climate Investment FundsNov 1, 2010Gender Climate Investment FundsThis short flyer explores the gender dimensions of climate finance mechanisms, focusing on Climate Investment Funds. All funds under the CIF have strong linkages to poor women’s and men’s livelihoods. Gendered patterns of energy use have significant, but often overlooked, implications for programme design and implementation.

Programmes and initiatives

Gender and Environment and Energy: Sixty percent of the world's poorest and most vulnerable people are women who are dependent on their natural environment to earn a living and feed their families.