Statement Delivered by The Executive Director of C21st on Behalf of Women and Gender Constituency @COP21

Distinguished ministers and heads of delegations,

 

My name is Titilope Gbemisola Akosa and I am speaking on behalf of the Women and Gender Constituency. I stand before you today in solidarity representing the voices and aspirations of millions of women, children and the socially disadvantaged communities of the world,.

 

We are now at a crucial stage of the negotiationsWe cannot allow our leaders to gamble with our future. As women, we are here to stand strong on behalf of the people and the planet to pressure world leaders to do what it takes to tackle the climate change crisis by delivering a legally binding, just and gender-responsive agreement that will set the world on the path of resilience and sustainability.

 

As a woman living in the city of Lagos, in Nigeria I have witnessed how the ocean inches towards us and threatens to swallow up our habitats and lives. How irregular rainfall patterns threaten our food security, and floods destroy our livelihoods. All of it deepen social inequality. But we are not willing to play the victim game. These catastrophic situations have pushed us out of our comfort zone to be here, with our solutions, for an ambitious agreement in Paris.

 

 

Last week, world leaders gathered here to give their visions to the COP. Now it is time to ensure an ambitious and fair agreement. Therefore, it must ensure all climate actions, both adaptation and mitigation, respect promote, protect and fulfil human rights, gender equality, the rights of indigenous people, intergenerational equity, a just transition and decent work, food security and ecosystem integrity and resilience.

 

This can only be achieved if Parties commit to stay below 1.5° C degree of warming.  – in a manner which upholds the principles of the Convention, namely equity and Common but Differentiated Responsibilities (CBDR).

 

The new agreement must acknowledge the loss of lives, cultures, and ecosystems that has already occurred and include a mechanism to address both financial and non-monetized Loss and Damage.

 

It must provide clearly defined, new, additional, and predictable gender-responsive public finance that is scaled up. , in the form of grants. The goal of $100 billion per year, must be a floor, not a ceiling, scaled up at least every five years, with a 50:50 balance between mitigation and adaptation, and finance for loss and damage in addition to adaptation funding.

 

Finally, we ask that you retain gender language in all the operative areas of the agreement.

This is our stand and we will not give up on our beautiful planet.

 

Thank you!

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