Mar(k): Travel, Hiking, and "Doing Good"

musings on our life of travel and volunteering

Ghana Women & Climate Change

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Role of Women in Climate Change Recognised

By Mark Shircore

In an address at the Copenhagen Climate Change summit, the Minister for Environment, Science and Technology, Ms. Sherry Ayittey, reported that Ghana has committed itself to the full integration of gender equality and active women’s participation in all aspects of climate change policies and programmes. This initiative recognizes that in developing countries it is women who are most at risk; partly because of their significant role in agriculture but also because they do not have sufficient control of their lives and access to as many opportunities as men to generate income. As Ms Ayitty stated, “the persistent nature of gender inequality and discriminatory practices work to exacerbate the precarious situation of women within the context of changing climatic and environmental conditions”.

Ms Ayitty reported that a number of actions have already been undertaken including the establishment of a focal point on gender and climate change within the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the development of a vulnerability assessment of women’s livelihoods in Ghana and a sector-wide collaboration between the EPA and key agencies to incorporate gender-responsive measures in combating desertification . The Energy Commission is also embarking on a massive promotion of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) as an alternative fuel to firewood and charcoal with the aim of reducing pressure on the forest as well as relieving women and children from the burden of searching for wood fuel for cooking and from unhealthy wood fuel smoke in kitchens.

In recognition of the country’s effort at promoting a strong gender agenda in the ongoing climate change negotiations, Ghana was honoured with the Gender Championship Award at the summit. The award was presented to Ms Ayitty by the Women Caucus and Gender Constituency, an international network of nongovernmental organizations involved in gender and climate change.

Written by Mar(k)

January 20, 2010 at 3:29 pm

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