Assist governments to create or expand Climate Change Financing Framework's that integrate their specific concerns into clear budget processes and recommendations.
Undertake Climate Change Budget Integration Indexes (CCBII) to measure the extent to which climate change, gender equality and human rights are integrated in budget processes.
Support governments to better define, identify and measure climate change expenditure through budget tagging systems - this can highlight where additional spending may be required to achieve National Climate Change Action Plans.
Assist governments to adopt investment appraisal guidelines and budget circulars that require line ministries to integrate climate change, poverty and gender equality in their designs while explaining how their investments contribute to climate change mitigation/adaptation, poverty reduction, women's empowerment and gender equality.
Build the capacity of regional and national institutions to promote climate change responsive budgets that are gender responsive, benefit the poor and enhance human rights (for example through the Pacific Parliamentary Effectiveness initiative and the provision of training modules parliamentarians and auditors).
Provide south-south exchanges and peer-learning events on climate change finance that has an impact on gender and poverty.
Increase transparency, accountability and oversight for the articulation of national budgets that are effective in terms of climate change adaptiveness, greenhouse gas reduction, gender responsiveness, poverty reduction and the strengthening of human rights.
In 2012, UNDP began to support Ministries of Finance to integrate climate change into their reform programmes – The programme experienced significant success in supporting the reform of systems to track climate related expenditures as well as in strengthening budget formulation.
Building on these relationships with Ministries of Finance and Ministries of Environment, the programme is expanding its partnerships to include sector ministries and social ministries including ministries leading on gender mainstreaming.
We will continue to focus on climate change mainstreaming as the entry point into sustainable planning and budget reform. However, we are now also focusing on the effectiveness of climate change interventions in terms of gender equality, poverty reduction and respect for human rights.
Integrating Gender, Poverty & Human Rights
For public investments to have a positive impact on sustainable growth and development, they need to integrate climate change responsiveness while having a positive impact on men, women and vulnerable groups.
This has been emphasised by the political commitments of the Paris Agreement, the Sustainable Development Goals and Agenda 2030. These international processes have leveraged political leadership and commitment to the climate change agenda. The Regional Programme will work to harness these political commitments on climate change to advocate and provide public policy solutions that facilitate climate responses through the budget that also promote gender equality and human rights.
Our Unique Position
Our work presents a unique opportunity to address long-standing challenges of climate change and its impact on men, women and vulnerable groups.
Our team of experts have years of experience working with Ministries of Finance and other state and non-state partners to integrate climate change into the formulation of national budgets and public financial management systems.
This experience working with government budgeting for cross-cutting policy issues (beyond traditional sector specific budgets) makes the GCCF team uniquely suited to deal with the intersection of climate change with gender, human rights and poverty.
UNDP has also expanded partnerships with key ministries involved in climate change and its intersection with gender, poverty and human rights along with other agencies including UNWOMEN, UNCDF, UN Environment and UNFCCC. These networks now present an opportunity for UNDP to build strong and lasting linkages in the field of climate change's intersection with gender, human rights, and poverty.
Designing public investments that are adaptive and/or reduce greenhouse gas emissions while benefitting men and women, reducing poverty, enhancing human rights and ultimately prevent conflict requires:
The relevant research and analyses to be conducted
Data to be collected
Designs to be adjusted
Systems to be made responsive
Financial instruments to be reformed and improved
Accountability mechanisms enhanced
This will lead to the delivery of interventions that recognize and address the differentiated needs of men and women, demographic, income, and marginalized groups.
However, to create sustainable change, gender equality, human rights, and conflict prevention should not only be designed within individual investments themselves but should instead be addressed within the financial instruments and processes that are used to create these interventions.
Gender Inequality in Asia & the Pacific
Women still make up two-thirds of Asia Pacific's poor and, on average, earn 40 per cent less than men in the region. This economic inequality is compounded by a lack of representation for women in decision-making processes, which constrain their ability to meaningfully participate in decisions on adaptation and mitigation.
Additionally, limits on ownership of resources (such as land, property and other assets), limits on access to finance and credit, limited access to information, unequal access to public services and high rates of sexual and gender based violence (25% to 67% of women reported experiencing physical and/or sexual partner violence across the region) also contribute significantly to inequality in the region.
Climate Change & Gender Disparities
Women and men are impacted differently by climate change:
Gender roles in society, sociocultural constraints and structural-inequalities render women disproportionately vulnerable to the effects of climate change with less voice to influence adaptation mitigation measures.
Women have a higher mortality rate during natural disasters such as floods and droughts.
Weather events that create homelessness and force resettlement impact women's personal security.
Women often have primary responsibility for water and fuel provisioning; changes in their availability due to climate-induced drought and scarcity affect the time and level of effort required to collect, secure, distribute and store these resource.
Women as powerful agents of change
Women are key actors in building community resilience and responding to climate related disasters.
Women tend to make decisions about resource use and investments in the interest and welfare of their children, families, and communities.
Women as economic and political actors can influence policies and institutions towards greater provision of public goods, such as energy, water and sanitation, and social infrastructure, which support climate resilience and disaster preparedness.
UNDP's Climate, Gender & Finance work
UNDP is improving gender equality by empowering women and vulnerable populations through opportunities to inform decision making in climate change finance.
Compounded exposure to climate risks (such as gender bias, exclusion and conflict) adds to climate vulnerability. Effective climate finance requires that these risks be recognised and addressed wherever possible.
To effectively increase resilience to the effects of climate change - recognising and addressing gender and equity issues is essential.
Climate Change & Human Rights
Climate change directly and indirectly impacts a range of internationally guaranteed human rights.
Human rights threatened by the impacts of climate change include the right to life, self-determination, development, health, sanitation, housing, water and food.
Amongst the most impacted are those who experience multiple forms of exclusion, disadvantage and vulnerability: for example, poor women with disabilities and poor indigenous women who may face compounded discrimination.
The impacts of climate change have already affected the human rights of millions of people, particularly within developing countries.
Indigenous people, disabled people, women, children and the elderly are usually particularly affected by climate change.
International Policy Frameworks
The Paris Agreement, ratified in 2016, raised political awareness and commitment to address climate change along with a realisation that governments need to reform their budget process to systematically address climate change across their public investment portfolio.
The end of 2015 also saw world leaders agree to Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Agenda 2030 has put a renewed emphasis on the importance of integrating social, environment and economic goals across national plans and budgets.
These recent groundbreaking agendas add to the existing Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (an international treaty adopted in 1979 by the General Assembly that directly refers to the need to address "the gender-related dimensions of disasters and climate change through the adoption of targeted, country specific policies, strategies, legislation, budgets and other measures") and the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, produced in 1995 as a blueprint for advancing women's rights. This platform, even 20 years later is still a progressive framework that provides a source of guidance for the international community.
The UNFCCC also maintains a focus on gender and climate change with the Paris Agreement stating that "Parties should, when taking action to address climate change, respect, promote and consider their respective obligations on human rights, the right to health, the rights of indigenous peoples, local communities, migrants, children, persons with disabilities and people in vulnerable situations and the right to development, as well as gender equality, empowerment of women and intergenerational equity".
Within this international context, there is a unique opportunity to build on numerous international political commitments and provide support to budget reforms which enable investments that not only respond to climate change but also address gender equality, poverty and human rights.