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International Women’s Day

On the 100th anniversary of international women's day WECF presents statement to the United Nations preparatory conference on Sustainable Development

08.03.2011 | WECF Press Release



In the last 20 years we have learned that Sustainable Development is only possible with women’s equality and full participation. This was already stated in Rio principle 20 agreed on in 1992, and needs now to be implemented when reforming international governance.

Currently most of humanity, and particularly women, are used for the economy of just a few. Billions are saved by the underpayment and free work provided by women to sustain our communities and economies. WECF believes that the ‘green economy’ should support the well-being for all within the carrying capacity of the planet. The vulnerable and poor cannot rely on market mechanisms alone. They need rights to protect their lives and livelihoods. A ‘green’ economic system must promote social equity and gender equity.

Today WECF spoke for the Women Rio+20 Committee which brings together international and regional networks of women organisations working on environment and development.
Specific outcomes of Rio2012, we think should include:

  • An agreement on the financial transaction tax as a financing mechanisms for sustainable development – of course, we would need specific access for women
  • A global treaty on principle 10 on public participation access to information and access to justice in environmental matters
  • A new governance structure must have a scientific assessment component to assess and monitoring of technology before widespread use. Women should be equally involved in the assessment committees and in the development of new technologies.

WECF encourages countries which commit to the ‘green economy’ roadmap, to aim at least 40% representation of women in the green economy, from training and job creation.

Sascha Gabizon, executive director of WECF, concluded her statement by saying “today, 70% of the poor are women. If we meet at Rio+40, lets make sure that this flagrant inequality no longer exists”.