Protocols, treaties and action: the 'climate change process' through gender spectacles
To what extent have gender considerations been taken into account in international climate change policy processes? They have been discussed little in climate change policy debates. In the case of the Kyoto Protocol, this lack of attention may be attributed to the decision to focus more on universal issues due to limited human resources available with which to broaden the negotiation. Proponents of integrating gender analysis in international energy related processes have had their efforts thwarted by overshadowing setbacks, such as the USA’s withdrawal from the Kyoto Protocol. However, persistent advocates have succeeded in gaining recognition of the need to promote the participation of female negotiators. In addition to this female representation, gender considerations should be included in future policy development. Doing so may increase the efficiency of the climate change process. Failing to do so could threaten gender equity. Three important areas to promote efficiency and/or equity are:
- responsibility for emissions
- vulnerability to climate change
- participation in climate change funded activities.
Each of these is discussed in detail in this article. In the conclusion, the author suggests publicising the need to explicitly adopt policy and take measures to direct renewable energy technologies towards women’s real needs. Another conclusion is that the international climate change process needs at all levels to have capacity building for the women involved and gender sensitivity training for those developing policy and projects.