Women and Climate Change. an Indispensable Element in Developing Countries

Friday, 3 July 2015: 4:00 PM-5:30 PM
CLM.B.06 (Clement House)
Gemma Duran-Romero, Professor, MADRID, Spain
Jose Antonio Negrin-de la Peņa, Professor, MADRID, Spain
The effects of climate change have contributed to increase inequality, especially in developing countries and, more specifically, in rural areas because of their dependence on agriculture. Due to climate change, they face the risk of loss of crops and livestock as well as reduction in the availability of marine products as well as, those from forestry or aquaculture.

The most vulnerable groups include women for their role and responsibility in rural areas for example as producers of basic food. When natural disaster occurs women have fewer resources to address them. They are most dependent on crops and have limited access to credit which it would allow them to rebuild the losses. This is because they have legal restrictions regarding rights from land and property.

 Furthermore, recent studies have shown that trafficking in women is a serious risk associated with environmental disasters since the effects derived from climate (flooding, drought or famine) break the local security network leaving women and girls alone, which makes them a segment especially vulnerable to the traffic of persons. Women or girls are who, seeking family support, may be exposed to exploitation.

Therefore, given the risk derived from climate change, considered one of the main challenge of 2015 by the World Economic Forum, it is very important do not forget the relevance of vulnerable populations, especially women. They play an important role in the welfare of households. If women have land ownership, this would have direct impact on agricultural productivity. Therefore, it would increase the income of women farmers and food availability. Furthermore, it would contribute to reduce price and increase and employment and real wages of women.

The aim of this paper is to address this issue with particular emphasis on policies to boost local security networks that enable the empowerment of women and go towards inclusive development in line with Agenda 2015.