The United Kingdom is a strong advocate for advancing gender equality and diversity in the energy sector. We are proud to be signatories to the Clean Energy Education and Empowerment for Women (C3E) Initiative and the Equal by 30 Campaign, both of which will be critical in ensuring that in the future, the energy sector is fairer, more flexible and more diverse.
As the incoming Presidency of COP26, the UK has a particular role to play in enabling the equal and meaningful participation and leadership of women in the clean energy industry. We are at a critical moment for the future of our planet and need to make sure that we make the best use of the talents of all our citizens in tackling the challenges ahead. And we are committed to sharing this message and enabling action at COP26.
That is why gender equality, diversity and inclusivity have been embedded into programming at the UK Pavilion across the COP fortnight. For example, COP26 Energy Day, taking place on 4 November, will begin with a breakfast reception, entitled ‘Female Leadership – Energy for the Global Energy Transition.’ The aim of the event is to inspire action to increase the representation of women in the energy sector globally, ensuring that our societies have the talent, skills and leadership to enable the energy transition to net zero. POWERful Women, the UK organisation which works on advancing gender diversity in the senior ranks of the UK’s biggest energy companies, will host the event.
Gender will also feature prominently across other Presidency Theme days, and in particular on Gender Day, which is scheduled for 9 November. Building on the UN Women convened Action Coalition on Feminist Action for Climate Justice and the UNFCCC Gender Action Plan, we are organising a High-Level event entitled ‘Advancing Gender Equality in Climate Action.’ This event, scheduled for the morning of Gender Day, will bring together Ministers, civil society, business leaders and activists, and will drive progress through the announcement of new and strengthened commitments. This event will showcase some of the best and brightest examples of gender equality in climate action, sending a message that the time for gender-responsive implementation is now.
Also on Gender Day, we have organised a panel discussion on ‘Net Zero: Solutions for a Gender-sensitive Transition’ and another entitled ‘Women Count: Achieving Gender Equality through Improved Monitoring and Reporting.’ The event on net zero will demonstrate how empowering women as decision makers and applying a gender lens to climate action can ensure that policies create a fairer and more equal society that delivers for all. Recognising that the collection of sex-disaggregated data is key to mainstreaming gender equality into policy, the discussion on monitoring and reporting will provide an opportunity for practitioners and policymakers to share examples of integrating gender indicators into reporting.
While women and girls, particularly those facing intersecting inequalities, are disproportionately impacted by climate change, we know they are also critical agents of change in climate action. We are committed to empowering and amplifying the needs and priorities of women and girls, including those from the most marginalised communities, throughout our Gender Day events. Please check the COP26 website for more information on these events. This website will be updated regularly in the run up to the summit, including, where relevant, with information on how to watch events virtually.