Boosting the number of women and girls entering careers involving science, technology, engineering and mathematic (STEM) is vital to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, UN chief António Guterres said in a message to mark the International Day of Women and Girls in Science..
Each year in February, the United Nations marks the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. It’s a chance to reflect on how the situation has improved for women working in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematic (STEM), and how much remains to be done. The day of February11th was established in 2015 is a reminder that women and girls play a critical role in science and technological communities and that their participation should be strengthened.
Recent studies show that, while more girls are attending school than before, they are under-represented in STEM subjects and they appear to lose interest as they reach adolescence. Women are mostly under-represented in STEM careers despite the high number of females graduating from university in the fields. For example, in Kenya, slightly more than 35% of the 6,664 doctors and dentists registered with the Kenya Medical Practitioners and dentists board by 2018 are women. Figures from UNESCO indicate that the representation of women researchers is also low in other science fields in Kenya. The exclusion of women from STEM is not unique to Kenya but common around the world.
Women and girls’ voices and expertise in science, technology and innovation are vital to bring solutions to disruptive change in our rapidly evolving world. We urgently need to close the gender gap in STEM fields and promote gender equality in the respective careers.
In the recent months we have seen young women and girls around the world being vocal in calling for action to combat climate change. When 16-year-old Swede Greta Thunberg charged World Economic Forum attendees in Switzerland to ‘act as if our house is on fire’, she was voicing sentiments similar to many of her age.
When women have the educational and leadership opportunities to pursue careers in STEM, they have influenced the development of policies, programs, and inventions that have changed our world. We cannot afford to leave the talent and contributions of half the world’s population on the table. Advancing women’s participation in STEM to ensure a new generation of female scientists follows in the footsteps of these pioneers is a national security and moral imperative.
The question on the link between climate change and conflicts in the Horn of Africa has constantly come up as a factor in conflict and climate change dynamics at the regional and international levels. In order to address this matter, FES and PACJA have begun to engage stakeholders in the Horn of Africa to unpack the complexity of conflict and its relationship with climate change – how conflicts transcend borders and generally how the two issues can be weaved together.
Recently adidas signed the climate protection charter for fashion industry at the UN climate change conference. They committed to becoming carbon-neutral by 2050 with an interim target of a 30% reduction in its overall carbon footprint by 2030.In addition, adidas is committed to using only recycled polyester in every product and on every application were a solution exists by 2014.
New figures reveal we are now producing nearly 300 million tons of plastic every year, half of which are disposables.
The Ultra boost running shoes are in partnership with marine conservation parley for oceans and contain around 5% 500ml bottles of recycled plastic bottles. The plastic used to manufacture the shoes is sourced from parley for oceans which are based in the Maldives and along 1,000 coral islands off the western coast of India. The waste is made into a yarn becoming a key component of the upper material of adidas footwear.
The upcycling is the newest sustainability trend with the retail industry. This is the reusing of discarded objects or materials to create a product of higher quality with the use new technology innovations, recycling plastics is becoming more efficient and popularly used in consumer products. Many retailers are jumping on the sustainability trend and creating different ways to recycle old goods. By 2020, Adidas wants all of their shoes to be made using recycled plastic, which is good for the health of the planet, but it's good to know that their first foray into sustainability has been a success.
Civil society groups in Nigeria under the umbrella of Climate and Sustainable Development Network (CSDevNet) have restated their commitment to collaborate more assiduously with the government in order to achieve Nigeria’s targets for the UN Programme on Reducing Emission from Deforestation and Degraded Forests (REDD+).
This was disclosed today during a high-level visit by the Network to Nigeria’s REDD+ office in Abuja. The visit held as part of the inception activities for the commencement of its World Bank funded FCPF project in Cross River and Ondo states. Led by Dr Ibrahim Choji (mni), Chair of the Network’s Board of Trustees, the civil society groups hinged their readiness on the need to create workable and seamless flow of interactions between the government and the forest dependent communities in Nigeria. This according to Dr. Choji, “is with a view to eliminating friction, needless suspicion and build the capacity of forest-dependent communities to engage in the UN REDD process.”
Dr. Choji further urged the Nigeria REDD+ Programme to always ensure strict adherence to the principles of equity and free, prior and informed consent that underpins the mechanism as a way of engendering the collaboration and participation of a larger section of non-state actors in Nigeria.
Recalling CSDevNet’s longstanding commitment to Nigerian forests and its relationship with the REDD+ Programme, the civil society leader pledged to reinvigorate the REDD+ Media Network it established in 2013 as well as the Nigerian Civil Society Framework on Paris Agreement and the SDGs (NCSFPAS) which was midwifed into existence in August 2018 with support from Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) to support Nigeria’s REDD+ programme.
Responding, the Nigeria REDD+ Programme Coordinator, Dr. Moses Ama welcomed the collaboration and applauded the civil society network for taking the right step in aligning with the National REDD+ secretariat for much needed collaboration, as experience sharing is key to achieving such a huge task. Dr Ama also assured the CSDevNet’s team of his secretariat’s support for the effective implementation of set plans which have already been shared with the REDD+ secretariat.
Stressing on the importance of experience sharing, Dr. Ama pointed out the case of Ekuri, a forest dependent community in Cross River State that is already considered as a forerunner in the REDD+ process. In a community like Ekuri, capacity building and mobilisation would be very strategic to meeting set objecives,” Dr Ama added. He called for more collaboration and civil society support for the Nigeria REDD+ processes as well as the country’s ambitious efforts at forest conservation, climate change adaptation and community development.
CSDevNet is the Nigerian chapter of Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) and a coordinating organisation to several other regional and international groupings that are relevant to its core objectives. The Network brings together organizations, comprising grassroots community practitioners, youth, media, women and faith-based organizations to commonly promote and advocate pro-poor, climate-friendly and equity-based responses to climate change.
Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) is primarily a market-based mechanism for achieving the effective reduction of carbon emissions from forests. The UN-REDD Programme is the United Nations collaborative initiative on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD) in developing countries. The Programme was launched in 2008 and builds on the convening role and technical expertise of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
The UN-REDD Programme supports nationally-led REDD+ processes and promotes the informed and meaningful involvement of all stakeholders, including Indigenous Peoples and other forest-dependent communities, in national and international REDD+ implementation
By Pius Oko
The Netherlands Development Organisation (SNV) leads the Voice for Change Partnership (V4CP) programme in partnership with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), under the DGIS strategic framework.
V4CP is working with 51 locally-based civil society organisations (CSOs) around the world to bridge the gap between the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and their implementation within society, especially amongst low-income and marginalised communities. It does so by strengthening the capacity of CSOs to influence stakeholders and decision-makers with solid and contextualised evidence in order to get the interests of communities embedded into government and business policies and practices.http://www.snv.org/update/story-change-including-pastoralists-voices-formulating-climate-related-policies-kenya
PACJA’s RECOMMENDATIONS FEATURE IN KEY DECISIONS OF THE 32nd ORDINARY SESSION OF THE ASSEMBLY OF THE AFRICAN UNIONWritten by Ann Mwende
The just concluded African Union Summit in Addis Ababa has ended on a high note with key recommendations among them the ones contributed by PACJA and partners from the high-level summit that was held on the sidelines of the summit in Addis Ababa on 8-9th February, 2019.
From the communique that was developed by PACJA and the team of experts the heads of states Summit has picked the following recommendations
- Urged parties to the Paris Agreement to recognize the special circumstances and needs of African countries, in line with the relevant and previous decisions adopted by the Conference of the Parties, and called upon the incoming presidency of the Conference of the Parties to continue with the consultations, with a view to reaching a decision in that regard by the twenty-fifth session of the Conference of the Parties, and requested the AGN to continue pursuing the issue.
- Urged developed countries to continue to scale up mobilized climate finance towards achieving the 2020 finance goal through private and public funds to deliver on the US$100 billion annually, building on the needs of developing countries and enhancing the country ownership of developing countries, and further enhance the provisions of predictable and sustainable finance building on the floor of the 100 billion USD annually
- Encouraged African countries to ratify the Kigali Amendment of the Montreal protocol as a vehicle to strengthen efforts to tackle climate change.
The full Recommendations from the 32nd Session of the AU Summit are attached below.
Prof. Seth Osafo, Legal Advisor, African Group of Negotiators,speaking during the Sidelines of the 2019 African Union Summit in Addis Ababa.Written by Ann Mwende
Mr James Murombedzi, Officer in Charge, ACPC, UNECA, Mr John Bideri,Chair of the PACJA Board, Mr. Augustine Njanmnshi, the Alliance Technical and Political Affairs and Linus Mofor Senior Environmental Affairs Officer in charge of energy at ACPC.Written by Ann Mwende
Mr John Bideri,Chair of the PACJA Board speaking during the Sidelines of the 2019 African Union Summit in Addis Ababa.Written by Ann Mwende
Mr. Augustine Njanmnshi, the Alliance Technical and Political Affairs Chair speaking during the Sidelines of the 2019 African Union Summit in Addis Ababa.Written by Ann Mwende
CLOSING THE SCIENCE GENDER GAP IN TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING AND MATHEMATICS.
Boosting the number of women and girls entering careers involving…
CLIMATE CHANGE, CONFLICTS & MIGRATION IN THE HORN OF AFRICA
The question on the link between climate change and conflicts…
ADIDAS HOPES TO SELL 11 MILLION PAIRS OF SHOES IN 2019.
Photo credits,Adidas. Recently adidas signed the climate protection charter for…
Nigeria’s REDD+ Programme Receives Fresh Civil Society Boost
Civil society groups in Nigeria under the umbrella of Climate…
Enhancing Policy Change on Climate Change and Natural Resource Management project
This project seeks to address the gaps in the existing…
The Voice for Change Partnership Project (V4CP)
This V4CP project is designed and implemented under the premise…
Deepening African Civil Society Engagement in International Post- Paris Climate Change Dialogues and Response Strategies
This project aims to strengthen African civil society engagement in…
THE PAN AFRICAN CIVIL SOCIETY FOREST CARBON PARTNERSHIP FACILITY (FCPF) CAPACITY BUILDING PROGRAM (CBP) ON REDD+ PROJECT
INTRODUCTION PACJA is currently the Africa CSO Recipient Organization for…