GWNET in partnership with the Clean Energy Solutions Center is pleased to announce an upcoming series of webinars on Gender Equality for a More Rapid and Inclusive Energy Transition. Beginning in October 2019, this series of six webinars will include expert panels of women who are industry executives, policy and thought leaders, entrepreneurs and analysts. The series will address the current roles of women in sustainable energy and the value and opportunities for increasing gender equality in this sector. The series will also highlight policies, entrepreneurs and networks that offer women an increased path for inclusion in this important sector.
Sustainable energy is the golden thread that connects economic growth, increased social equity and an environment that allows the world to thrive. Gender diversity has been demonstrated to be an indispensable factor for reaching sustainability as it drives innovation, opens new pathways for technology deployment, brings fresh perspectives to the development of societies and attracts and retains a richer pool of talent.
According to the recently launched IRENA study, Renewable Energy: A Gender Perspective, the renewable energy sector employs about 32% women, as compared to 22% in the energy sector overall. Overall jobs in the renewable energy sector are projected to rise from the current 11 million to 28.8 million by 2050. This represents a large opportunity and a crucial need for talent.
While the transition to a sustainable energy future offers tremendous opportunities for women throughout the world, the energy sector continues to be male-dominated, particularly in technical and decision-making roles.
In many developing countries, women have the primary role of providing and using energy in the household and community, so the use of unsustainable energy sources has disproportionate negative health and economic impacts on women. Yet women continue to be underrepresented in the political decision-making process as well as in the entrepreneurial and industrial energy sectors.
The July 2019 report, Blueprint Guide for Creating Gender-sensitive Energy Policies, commissioned by the Clean Energy Solutions Center and Power Africa, notes that energy poverty creates a clearly gendered experience. These inequalities weave through many societal areas, including agriculture, education, health, water, economic ability and others. Energy policies that consider gender roles, differences and preferences can improve the impact of energy access projects and initiatives, and increased energy access has been shown to improve gender equality overall.
The blueprint builds on the experience of the first-ever regional policy on gender mainstreaming for energy access, which the Heads of State in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) adopted in 2017. It provides a detailed road map for developing a gender and energy policy, including different considerations around rationale, stakeholders, design, development, implementation, success factors, challenges and integrated strategies.
This webinar series will explore the current roles of women in the sector, detail opportunities in the growing sustainable energy sector, hear from successful women in the field, and highlight best practices and policy options and networks to foster gender equality in the transition to a sustainable energy sector.
In each webinar, an expert panel will be followed by an interactive question-and-answer session with the audience. All webinars will be free to participants and will be scheduled to encourage global participation. The tentative schedule for the webinar series is:
October 2019 – Energy transition and the role of women: Where do we stand today?
November 2019 – Renewable energy: Job opportunities along the value chain
January 2020 – Gender-sensitive energy policies
February 2020 – Women empowerment: Best Practices for the sustainable energy sector
March 2020 – Shining a light on women energy entrepreneurs
April 2020 – Networks promoting women in energy
GWNET and the Clean Energy Solutions Center will offer a certificate of completion for any participant who successfully completes all six of the webinars in the series.
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GWNET aims to advance the global energy transition by connecting and empowering women working in sustainable energy in all parts of the world through interdisciplinary networking, advocacy, training, coaching and mentoring, and services related to projects and financing. It is a non-profit organisation with more than 800 members in more than 88 countries.
The Clean Energy Solutions Center helps governments, advisors and analysts create policies and programs that advance the deployment of clean energy technologies. The Solutions Center is an initiative of the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM), a global forum to share best practices and promote policies and programs that encourage and facilitate the transition to a global clean energy economy.