(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Regional and international leaders in the energy and climate change sector convened in Doha to discuss the empowerment of women in the United Nations' climate change negotiations.
The meeting was hosted by Masdar, the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs' Directorate of Energy Climate Change, and Mary Robinson Foundation " Climate Change. The meeting, which took place during the 18th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 18) currently being held in Doha, Qatar, highlighted the lack of gender balance in addressing climate change and the need to secure ministerial support to reinforce women's participation in the negotiations.
COP 18, which is being held for the first time in the GCC region, provides an excellent opportunity to highlight the positive achievements of the region in relation to the education and empowerment of women in various fields, including the clean energy sector.
Citing the role played by the UAE in empowering women, Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Special Envoy for Energy and Climate Change and CEO of Masdar, said: "In line with the directive of our wise and visionary leadership, the UAE has achieved great strides towards empowering women: Today, nine out of 40 members at the UAE Federal National Council are women.
It's equally noteworthy that the UAE women constitute 66 per cent of the public sector workforce, 30 per cent of which are senior decision makers. The UAE is committed to empowering women through various platforms including the Clean Energy Education and Empowerment Women's Initiative, as part of the Clean Energy Ministerial."
A draft decision on gender inclusion in the UN negotiations has already been approved at COP 18 by the Subsidiary Body for Implementation as a first step towards increasing women's leadership in addressing climate change. Speaking at the event, Dr. Nawal Al-Hosany director of sustainability, Masdar, said: "Climate change is one of the most pressing global concerns of our time. Men and women alike have a responsibility to play an active part in the dialogue and movement to address climate change."
Discussions were led by Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland and president of the Mary Robinson Foundation - Climate Justice, Fahad bin Mohammed Al Attiyah, chairman of the Organising Sub-Committee and member of the Organising Supreme Committee; COP 18; Dr. Nawal Al-Hosany; Lakshmi Puri, assistant secretary-general of the United Nations. The pavilion was designed in the shape of the Masdar Institute's buildings that are inspired by Islamic architecture and considered amongst the most sustainable buildings in the world.