Gender, Climate Change and Biodiversity


Climate change is a major concern for development policy and practice. Climate change does affect women and men differently and they have different coping capabilities with its effects. Yet too often climate change responses do not consider the different impacts of climate change on women and men, and fail to take into account women’s specific knowledge and expertise and their existing coping strategies. The same applies to biodiversity. These differing relationships with climate change and biodiversity result in gender-differentiated impacts when the composition of the climate or the biodiversity changes. Such changes might limit women’s access to, and control over, natural resources (i.e. land, water, cattle and trees) and reduce their possibilities to provide for their families.

Women have also remained conspicuously absent from decision-making processes on climate change and biodiversity responses at all levels. Existing work on climate change and biodiversity has focused on women’s vulnerability, rather than on relations of power or their positive contribution towards climate change and biodiversity. Furthermore, despite increasing work on gender and climate change, there have been few attempts to tackle the issues collaboratively, in ways that maximise resources and the exchange of knowledge.

Empowering women to participate as equals in information sharing and generation, education and training, technology transfer, organizational development, financial assistance and policy development enhances biodiversity conservation. Therefore, interventions in the field of climate change and biodiversity have to include a gender perspective from the outset.

Resources and publications on gender in natural resources, food security, climate change and biodiversity you can find here.

Gendernet Newsletter 1.2016 on Gender and Climate Change

Gender and Land Governance

Gender and Food Security