Until recently, few climate change mitigation projects considered gender
equality as an important factor, despite evidence that women in
developing countries are disproportionately affected by climate change
and play important roles in effective responses to those changes. If
women are considered at all, they may be seen more as victims of climate
change than as active leaders and participants in solutions and
responses. Lack of attention to women’s needs may lead to interventions
that reinforce existing gender inequalities and deepen the negative
effects women experience due to climate change. Yet women and girls can
be key actors, contributors, and agents of change in climate initiatives
– particularly if they are actively engaged in the planning,
implementation and decision-making processes.
This report highlights 3 cases that have received climate change
mitigation financing and included attention to gender at some stage of
their implementation: the Nepal Biogas Support Program; Household Energy
and Universal Rural Energy in Mali; and the Bogotá, Colombia
TransMilenio Bus Rapid Transit System. Some of the lessons drawn from
the study include the following.
- Gender mainstreaming is essential to a projects’ success since results
are most effective when gender issues are integrated from the outset.
- Socially disaggregated data that are intentionally gathered throughout
the project cycle supports more effective projects. Systematic
gender-focused data collection, targets, and indicators help to
properly analyze and demonstrate the benefits of paying proper
attention to gender equality in climate change mitigation.
- Economic and social co-benefits, for both men and women, help secure
national and community support for activities that contribute to
climate change mitigation, and ensure their long-term viability.
- Integration of gender equality issues affects project efficacy and
impact, e.g., by improving the results of large-scale transport and
grid-based energy infrastructure projects, as well as small-scale,
- Gender sensitive government and institutional policies are key factors
in the formulation of more inclusive climate mitigation measures and
- Many governments, funders, and institutions need guidance on how to
incorporate gender considerations in ways that lead to more effective
and inclusive projects, in which benefits are shared equitably.
Karlsson, G. Exposing gender gaps in financing climate change mitigation. Global Gender and Climate Alliance-Women’s Environment and Development Organization, (2015) 35 pp.