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Gender, climate and disaster resilience

Women are differently and disproportionately affected by climate change and disasters, both because of the roles they play in growing food and providing for the energy and water needs of their families and because they comprise a large number of the communities that depend on natural resources for their livelihood. At the same time, women are powerful agents of change,  well-placed to identify and adopt appropriate adaptation strategies and mitigation techniques since they play important roles in core sectors affected by climate change, such as agriculture, livestock management and energy, and can be strong advocates and contributors to climate action and sustainability.

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UNDP supports the Women Solar Engineer initiative, which builds local capacity for off-the-grid communities to provide clean, low-cost solar energy.
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In Nepal, empowering women as key agents of change in disaster risk reduction is central to UNDP’s support for community-level disaster management.
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With UNDP support, women entrepreneurs in Cambodia are taking up cookstove production, making hundreds of improved cookstoves every month, reducing their wood consumption and increasing their income.

UNDP supports partners to engage women as stakeholders and planners in successful action on climate change, environmental protection and disaster resilience and to safeguard and ensure that women have equal access to and control of the resources they need to adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate and environmental changes. This work includes improving women’s access to clean energy and securing their rights and tenure to land, water, forests, housing and clean and green alternative livelihoods. In addition, UNDP collaborates with other UN agencies in supporting countries to integrate gender equality and women’s empowerment into the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and other multilateral environmental agreements.

Women’s involvement in key disaster risk reduction initiatives, including for early warning, contingency planning and long-term recovery, is also critical for building community resilience to disaster. UNDP supports partners to strengthen the participation of women in decision-making processes on disaster risk reduction. This includes building capacities of women’s organizations to participate in the formulation and implementation of policies, programmes and strategies and building capacities of relevant institutions to integrate gender perspectives.

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