March 27, 2023
Gender and development (GAD), including the advancement of sexual and reproductive health and rights, are important aspects of climate action as it puts emphasis on the social determinants of health and socioeconomic-related impacts of climate change on women and girls. These are commonly indirect impacts of climate change.
Critical to gender-responsive adaptation is that we not only recognize these realities but there are appropriate actions implemented to address the underlying gender inequalities that worsen the vulnerabilities of women and girls across different backgrounds, ethnolinguistic groups, and communities.
Gender lens in the NCCAP and LCCAP guidelines is often justified through sex-disaggregated data or a quantitative representation of the most exposed groups to climate-related impacts.
Our call is to encourage a gender-responsive climate strategy, especially at the local level, that should go beyond the mandatory documentary requirements. If we really want to understand the gender-specific impacts of climate change, analysis of climate impacts should be simultaneous with gender analysis. And to do so would also require tackling other components such as health where SRHR comes in.
Integrating important elements of gender, health, SRHR, as well as access to livelihood, energy, mobility, social services, climate finance, and risk insurance, among others, would give far greater information about the realities on the ground while we proactively work on key issues including violence on women and children, and the burden of unpaid care work. Science and evidence-based data are needed in climate action, but how we make data meaningful for women and girls to compel communities to act needs to be continuously communicated.
Strengthening the multi-actor partnerships through research and capacity-building is important. This is to allow more diverse representation to fill gaps in the gendered analysis in climate assessments and to implement gender-responsive climate risk management strategies and action plans.
In our project, we had to innovate and create a community-driven data gathering using existing tools that would capture the nexus. For one, conducting a climate impact chain analysis can provide a basis for developing better and contextualized climate adaptation strategies and plans. We are used to analyzing the direct impacts but often generalize the indirect impacts such as the socioeconomic aspects, aggravated issues on gender inequalities, and even sexual reproductive health and rights.
We don’t have to create a new tool for this matter. Tools such as the Rapid Care Analysis (RCA) and the Adaptive Social Protection (ASP) analysis are publicly available and are widely practiced by different organizations. Integrating important elements of gender, health, SRHR, unpaid care work, as well as access to social services, climate finance, and risk insurance, among others, would give far greater information about the realities on the ground.
Adaptation finance must flow with urgency, which means looking at possible resources that can be blended, in this case, the use of the local government’s GAD fund to implement gender-responsive adaptation programs. Resources must become accessible to the communities in order to truly address vulnerabilities that impact women and girls the most.