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In the Pacific region, as in other parts of the world, women are spearheading climate adaptation and mitigation strategies — something Sharon Bhagwan-Rolls, a second-generation Pacific Fijian feminist has championed throughout her three-decade journey in the women’s rights movement.
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The 66th session of the Commission on the Status of Women closed its two-week long session today, acknowledging the important role of women and girls as agents of change for sustainable development, in particular safeguarding the environment and addressing the adverse effects of climate change. The agreed conclusions adopted by Member States are a blueprint for world leaders to promote women’s and girls’ full and equal participation and leadership in the designing and implementation of climate change, environmental and disaster risk reduction (DRR) policies and programmes moving forward.
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At a 21 March side event of the 66th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66), UN leaders, policy makers, and civil society activists highlighted the impacts of climate shocks and environmental hazards on women and girls in humanitarian settings.
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Remarks by United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN Women, Sima Bahous, at the UN Women side event, ‘Climate Shocks Exacerbating Humanitarian Crisis, Insecurity and Gender Inequality – Voices from the Sahel and Afghanistan’, at the 66th session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women, 21 March 2022
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Officials, civil society representatives and other practitioners gathered for the Asia-Pacific Regional Consultation ahead of the Sixty-Sixth session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66) agreed that women and girls need to be better represented in all aspects of climate change, environmental and disaster risk reduction (DRR) policy and programme processes, from the leadership and decision-making spaces, data collection and analysis, to policy formulation, programme design, and all the way through to implementation on the ground, as well as the monitoring and evaluating of these efforts.
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On the sidelines of the 66th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women, African women leaders came together to discuss the impact of climate change on women in Africa, and the leadership roles that women are playing in mitigating the impacts of climate change.
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“Climate action must include investing in women activists, human rights defenders, and civil society organizations,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a virtual town hall with women representing a range of civil society organizations during the 66th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66).
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The 66th Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66), from 14 to 25 March 2022, will focus on the important role of women and girls and achieving gender equality in the context of climate change. This year’s priority theme is “Achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls in the context of climate change, environmental and disaster risk reduction policies and programmes”. The review theme is “Women’s economic empowerment in the changing world of work".
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In Lebanon, women are making substantial contributions and leading the charge on climate change adaptation, mitigation, and response, to build a more sustainable future for all. As the world commemorates International Women’s Day and comes together for the 66th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women, we’re celebrating some of the women who are taking innovative actions for climate adaptation across the country.
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Mindy Lubber is CEO and President of Ceres, a sustainability non-profit working with the most influential capital market leaders – investors, companies, regulators and policymakers to drive equitable policy solutions throughout the economy. She leads an all-women executive team that has inspired these leaders to take actions that will help stabilize the climate, protect water and natural resources, and build a more just and inclusive economy. In 2020, Lubber was named as one of the UN Environment Programme’s Champions of the Earth, and one of Barron’s Magazine 100 most influential women in U.S. finance for two years in a row.
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Rachel Nzulu, 29, works to support women farmers develop climate smart agriculture techniques.
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Kamala Thapa, 39, an indigenous Magar woman, is Indigenous Peoples and Local Community Manager at the Centre for Indigenous Peoples’ Research and Development, a non-governmental organization in Kathmandu, Nepal.
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Across the Europe and Central Asia, women and girls are advancing feminist climate justice and leading the charge on climate change adaptation, mitigation and response. They are mobilizing local, national, regional and global climate movements and harnessing the transformative power of feminist leadership to face the unprecedented challenges of our times.
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This year, the 66th session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66), the UN’s largest annual gathering on gender equality and women’s empowerment, will take place from 14 to 25 March, under the theme, “Achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls in the context of climate change, environmental and disaster risk reduction policies and programmes”. 
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Advancing gender equality in the context of the climate crisis and disaster risk reduction is one of the greatest global challenges of the 21st century. This year’s theme for International Women’s Day (8 March), “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow”, explores the ways in which women and girls are leading the charge on climate change adaptation, mitigation, and response around the world, contributing powerful leaders and change-makers to a more sustainable future for all.
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On International Women’s Day, we celebrate women and girls everywhere.
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This year’s International Women’s Day (8 March) takes place against the backdrop of the ongoing global pandemic and emerging new strains, but also in a world desperately trying to emerge from the impact of this pandemic and focus again on other urgent and critical global issues such as climate change.
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UN Women is putting fisherwomen at the center of any effort to adapt, mitigate and manage risks related to natural disasters while improving their lives and resilience. This includes making a climate-friendly fisheries economy a reality.
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Vanessa Nakate, 25, is a Ugandan climate change activist and founder of the Africa-based Rise Up Movement. Nakate speaks out on the climate crisis and its intersection with gender and race, especially in how it disproportionately affects women and girls in Africa. Nakate shares that gender equality is a powerful tool in tackling the climate crisis.
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Those who are most affected by climate change today–women, girls and marginalised communities–must be involved in the design and implementation of climate response actions to ensure the equal sharing of benefits.