Enhancing Women’s Access to CIS Crucial to Adapt Climate Risks: UNECA


Addis Abeba  August 7/2020 (ENA) Strengthening the access of women to climate information and services (CIS) is crucial for improving their ability to adapt climate risks, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) said. 

UNECA in collaboration with the African Institute for Economic Development and Planning (IDEP) on Thursday hosted a webinar that aimed to strengthen the engagement of women in CIS at regional level.

The webinar also aimed at building women’s capacity and awareness of climate information tools and resources under the theme “Strengthening the Engagement of Women in CIS Generation, Packaging, Dissemination, Uptake and Use.”

On the occasion, participants identified and discussed the potential contribution of women in mitigating environmental damage and embedding climate justice in governance mechanisms as the world emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The participants also enumerated tools, resources and networking opportunities to support women engagement in CIS; and identified bottlenecks and impediments in facilitating women involvement in CIS at national and sub-national levels.

UNECA’s Technology, Climate Change and Natural Resource Management Division Director, Jean-Paul Adam said investing in women as part of the climate change response was crucial as it would lead to environmental gains and greater returns across the sustainable development goals.

“Women have significant knowledge and understanding of the changing environmental conditions, which could play a crucial role in identifying viable and practical community adaptation,” Adam pointed out.

Involving women in the switch to cleaner and modern energy ensures that their concerns and those of the community are addressed, he added.

Keiso Matashane-Marite of the UNECA’s Gender, Poverty and Social Policy Division on her part emphasized the need for aggressive policy interventions and affirmative action to address the issue of limited participation of women in climate issues and science.

Stressing the close links between gender and climate, she said gender inequalities exacerbated climate change vulnerabilities in communities.

African governments and institutions should provide incentives for women and girls to engage in CIS and the process help contribute towards poverty eradication and the attainment of the sustainable development goals, she stated.