Day 7- Climate Change solutions: The superpower of women and ideas
Women are the most vulnerable to climate change but the best poised to be agents of change. Today, we attended a side event about women and leadership. The panel of powerful leaders was chaired by Mary Robinson, President Mary Robinson Foundation-Climate Justice, and included Christiana Figures, Connie Hedegaard, Lykke Friis, Maria Fernanda Espinosa, and Patricia Espinosa. The panelists suggested a multi-faceted response to climate change that includes: mitigation, adaptation actions, education, ending poverty.
Lykke Friis, Danish Minister for Climate and Energy and Minister for Gender Equality, began by quoting Margaret Thatcher, “if you want something done, ask a woman!” She stated that women are not at top of climate negotiations but are hit hard by climate change so need to be empowered. Women are key to beat climate change and poverty by first beating energy poverty since 1.4 billion people lack access to electricity.
Young women must be completely empowered to do work to fight climate change. Women still cook with open fires so are directly contributing to climate problem with uncontrolled black soot. Women are the most vulnerable population in the world—in charge of procuring water, cooking, walking to collect fuel wood, growing food. We educate our children in sustainable or unsustainable behaviors.
Christiana Figures, Executive Secretary of the COP
Women have a greater role in international relations than ever. We must bring a gender perspective to the many issues that are being discussed in Cancun” Gender issue is a central part of the process. Everyday there are more leading women in positions, but women are still underrepresented.
Patricia Espinosa, President of COP16
It was inspiring to hear from these accomplished women who are leading the fight for human rights in climate change.
Emily Rodriguez, WAGGGS delegate, United States
Exploring the Climate Change Village
Five delegates from WAGGGS have now left us and gone home to respectively Kenya, Canada, Australia and Denmark. To make WAGGGS more visible and our message more compelling than ever, we have divided the remaining group into two.
The new arrived delegates who are here in week two, and the delegates who participated in COP15 hold the fort in Cancun Messe in Moon Palace.
The other delegates from respectively Costa Rica, Honduras, Mexico, Zambia and Denmark, took off to Community Work exclusion in the Climate Change Village, an area just outside the city, where civil society actively using of non-formal education can educate themselves about COP16 and climate change in general.
First, we participated in a joint activity with WOSM, where we had to go round in the Climate Change Village and parts bracelet out with the message "Scout 1 - 1 Cobija". All school children who had arrived in a lot of busses were overexcited - not just because they got a bracelet, but also to see a mix of nationalities with scarves work closely together.
Then one of the local Scouts took us to an extremely exciting sensory buildings, with fantastic colorful pictures hanging from the ceiling. The pictures were a cocktail of Mexican traditions, the Mexican daily life and a journey through the ages - from infants who was washed in the local to the wrinkled old Mexican ladies who weaved clothes in colorful materials.
After this incredibly emotional experience, we went to "Climate Change - Youth Forum" conference where there were lectures on basic knowledge of UNFCCC, COP16, Article 6 and in general how things are inside the doors, where civil society does not have access.
Tomorrow we are looking forward to going together with other NGOs out and plant trees.
Trine G. H. Thomsen, WAGGGS delegate, Denmark.