Published | 23rd October 2014

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2015 and beyond: Action for a just, gender-equitable and sustainable future

Gender and climate justice

This short briefing paper outlines CARE’s policy recommendations for promoting gender equitable and sustainable development in the face of climate change. It is focused on three major advocacy moments happening in over the next 12 months, including; the post-2015 sustainable development framework negotiations, a UNFCCC global climate change agreement, and the post-2015 framework for disaster risk reduction.


Gender inequality is one of the most widespread and persistent barriers to securing a world of hope, tolerance and social justice. As one of the greatest injustices of our time, climate change amplifies the risks faced by people who are already poor and marginalised, with widespread negative consequences primarily for women and girls, and for society as a whole.

Social inequality and the injustice of climate change not only reinforce each other, but have common roots – in various forms of domination by powerful elites and in a development model which too often puts human rights and the environment second and economic growth first, compromising the well- being of billions for the benefit of a few.

In 2015, governments will seek to agree three major international policy frameworks with long-term implications reaching at least into 2030. These include the post-2015 sustainable development framework, a future UN climate change agreement, and the post-2015 framework for disaster risk reduction. Within these negotiations, governments have taken their vital first steps towards addressing gender inequality, which has built on progress achieved over the last 15 years under the Millennium Development Goals (specifically Goal 3).

Now is the moment for governments to make truly historic choices to globally shift course towards far more equitable and ambitious sustainable development and to tackle the underlying drivers of vulnerability and climate injustice. Tackling climate change and reducing gender inequality are not optional extras. They lie the core of building a fair and sustainable world for all.


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