Women's Earth & Climate Action Network, International
The Women's Earth & Climate Action Network is a solutions-based, multi-faceted effort established to engage women worldwide to take action as powerful stakeholders in climate change and sustainability solutions. For Our Earth and Future Generations A project of Women's Earth and Climate Caucus and its partner eraGlobal Alliance
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WECAN at the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress

August 31, 2016

Patricia Gualinga (right) presents the Living Forests proposal and speaks out against oil drilling in the Ecuadorian Amazon. Photo by Emily Arasim. 

This September, the Women's Earth and Climate Action Network will speak for climate justice, women's leadership, Indigenous and  frontline women’s struggles and solutions, and deep systemic change at the 2016 International Union for the Conservation of Nature's (IUCN) 'World Conservation Congress'.

IUCN is the world’s largest environmental organization, comprised of both governmental and civil society representatives. The IUCN World Conservation Congress, held once every four years and this year's 'Planet at the Crossroads' conference will focus specifically on action to fulfill the Paris Climate Agreement, adopted by 195 world governments in 2015.

As a global network of women for climate justice, the Women's Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) International is committed to bringing the voices of grassroots, frontline and Indigenous women community and Earth defenders into such spaces to share their struggles, experiences and solutions and to demonstrate resistance to false solutions to the climate crisis, while offering clear directives for a just and safe energy transition.  WECAN International is glad to have the opportunity to participate in the World Conservation Congress this year as a voice for climate justice, the Earth and all generations - calling for and presenting effective, just, women-led solutions to address the interwoven social and ecologic crisis that we face.

WECAN International and Gender Program allies at IUCN will co-sponsor and present the key panel 'A Deep Dive on Gender and Environment: Exploring the Policy Landscape, Strategies in Action, and Women’s Frontlines Solutions’. 

Additionally, WECAN is honored to be collaborating with Amazon Watch, the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature and diverse allies gathering at IUCN through the Sacred Lands Film network. 

Detailed Information:

Patricia Gualinga, longtime WECAN ally and Director of International Relations for the People of Sarayaku, Ecuadorian Amazon, has been invited by WECAN International ( co-sponsored by WECAN and  Amazon Watch) to present during the session 'A Deep Dive on Gender and Environment: Exploring the Policy Landscape, Strategies in Action, and Women’s Frontlines Solutions’.  Close ally, Leila Salazar Lopez, Executive Director of Amazon Watch, will be interpreting for Patricia, and Osprey Orielle Lake , Executive Director of WECAN International will be presenting at this session about women and climate justice  .

We will focus on women-led solutions to protect natural and sacred places vulnerable to climate change and threats of resource extraction, including the rainforests of the Amazon.

The “Living Forest” proposal of the Sarayaku people's of the Ecuadorian Amazon, presented for many years and  globally during the United Nations COP21 climate negotiations in Paris last year, will serve as a key foundation for our strategy and call to action. 

Standing with the people of Sarayaku and many allies, we will advocate for ‘No Go policies’ for mineral and oil extraction in relation to World Heritage Sites, sacred natural sites and primary forests. 

It's imperative that Indigenous voices and solutions that respect "living forests" are heard at this event and throughout the IUCN World  Conservation Congress.

With Sarayaku's ancestral territory under imminent threat from state-sanctioned oil drilling, their vision is not only compelling - it offers the best hope for protecting their territory, culture and communities, and the health, and wellbeing of our global climate.

Additionally, we will present the Women’s Climate Action Agenda, a comprehensive WECAN report analyzing the root causes of the climate crisis, and sharing the solutions and demands of global frontline women on issues ranging from forests, oceans, agriculture, fossil resistance and much more.

A Deep Dive on Gender and Environment: Exploring the Policy Landscape, Strategies in Action, and Women’s Frontlines Solutions

Monday, September 5th, 2016

8:30 to 10:30am, Workshop in Room 317B

Click here for details on the IUCN webpage

About the event: IUCN and partners will bring together leaders from across the Union to illustrate real-case best practices, lessons and innovations for gender-responsive environmental action. Participants will be engaged in cutting-edge discussion, aiming to uncover the hurdles and bottlenecks to conservation, and committing to key actions. In partnership with WECAN—the Women’s Earth & Climate Action Network—the importance of grassroots women’s perspectives and innovations will be a special focus, examining where gaps remain and where women’s voices are urgently needed for propelling progress.

Speakers Include:

  • Patricia Gualinga, Kichwa Leader, Sarayaku Ecuadorian Amazon
  • Bridget Burns, Women’s Environment and Development Organization (WEDO) Co-Director
  • Sally Ranney, IUCN Patron of Nature and WECAN Co-founder
  • Lorena Aguilar, IUCN Global Senior Gender Adviser
  • Osprey-Orielle Lake, Women's Earth and Climate Action Network Co-founder/Executive Director
  • Arzu Rana Deuba, IUCN Councilor from Nepal, Chair of the Gender Task Force
  • Luther Bois Anukur, IUCN Regional Director, Eastern/Southern Africa
  • Cotilda Nakyeyune, IUCN Uganda Country Office Head of Office
  • Miguel Avila Moraes, IUCN Brazil National Coordinator
  • Matti Nummelin, Government of Finland
  • Julia Duncan Cassell Liberia
  • Fadi Al-Shraideh, IUCN Regional Director, West Asia