As Global Temperatures Rise, Women Rise for Climate Justice Day of Action
Women and Climate Justice with One Billion Rising -- February 14th 2014! Local actions led by WECAN members will take place in regions around the world
On February 14, 2014, WECAN (Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network) will take action for Mother Earth and Climate Justice in collaboration with One Billion Rising for Justice! Leading up to and on February 14th WECAN's members will document women-led solutions, testimonies and successes in the field of environmental/climate justice throughout the world. While the One Billion Rising for Justice Campaign is addressing many aspects of women and justice, WECAN will be focusing specifically on women and climate justice. The Day of Action will also be dedicated to the signing of WECAN’s Declaration, “Women of the World Call for Urgent Action on Climate Change & Sustainability Solutions”. http://wecaninternational.org/declaration
Actions can be viewed on February 14th at http://wecaninternational.org and http://www.onebillionrising.org/resources/one-billion-rising-climate-justice
According to One Billion Rising for Justice, the action is “a call to women, men, and youth around the world to gather safely on February 14th, 2014 outside places where they are entitled to justice – court houses, police stations, government offices, school administration buildings, work places, sites of environmental injustice, military courts, embassies, places of worship, homes, or simply public gathering places where women deserve to feel safe but too often do not. The campaign is in recognition that we cannot end violence against women without looking at the intersection of poverty, racism, war, the plunder of the environment, capitalism, imperialism, and patriarchy. Impunity lives at the heart of these interlocking forces.”
WECAN International is a global women’s earth and climate action movement, uniquely engaging women grassroots activists, Indigenous and business leaders, scientists, policy makers, farmers, academics and culture-shapers in collaboration. Our goal is to stop the escalation of climate change and environmental and community degradation, while accelerating the implementation of sustainability solutions through women’s empowerment, partnerships, hands-on trainings, advocacy campaigns, and political, economic, social and environmental action.
WHY WOMEN AND CLIMATE JUSTICE:
The impacts of climate change and environmental degradation are different for women and men. Women from low-income communities, Indigenous women, and those in developing countries bear a heavier burden from the impacts of climate change because they are more reliant upon natural resources for survival or they inhabit areas with poor infrastructure. Due to extreme and increasing droughts, women and girls in Africa have to walk longer distances for drinking water while foregoing economic opportunities and education. In search of fuel wood women have to walk further into the forest making them more at risk for attack and rape. Women make up 20 of the 26 million estimated refugees displaced by climate change, comprising 80% of the world's climate refugees.
At the same time, women are key to sustainability solutions. It is women who are responsible for food production and the collection of water and fuel wood, which makes them particularly aware of changing weather patterns that alter growing seasons, decrease crop yields and lower water levels. This knowledge is essential to adaption and mitigation strategies. Women in North America determine 80 percent of all consumer purchases. That market power could be mobilized to significantly reduce carbon emissions through purchasing choices, including demanding an end to fossil fuels and a radical increase in renewable energy.
Some of the international actions that will take place for Women and Climate Justice are:
- Women farmers will highlight the importance of local organic farms to food sovereignty and food security
- Actions demonstrating how women are being affected by the tar sands and pipelines
- Highlighting women-led solar projects in Africa
- Calling on communities to plant trees and flowers that absorb large amounts of CO2
- Women protecting the rainforests of Congo and the Amazon
- Holding a “carbon fast” with youth in the U.S. and producing short videos on what experiences they had during the fast and what they will do going forward based on their experiences
- Making the link between violence against women and violence against the earth
“Women are rising with fierce resolve, because what’s happening at the national and international policy level on climate change is not equivalent to the urgency we are facing. We are demanding no more delays and calling for strategic action that addresses root causes and systemic change. WECAN is standing for the Earth and future generations and we are visibilizing women's resistance movements, clean energy businesses, a transition to an equitable new economy, gender-sensitive climate policies and on-the-ground solutions to climate change.”
--Osprey Orielle Lake, Founder/Pres., Women’s Earth and Climate Caucus, Co-Founder, WECAN and author of the award-winning book, Uprisings for the Earth: Reconnecting Culture with Nature.
Osprey Orielle Lake is available for interviews.