“In the course of history, there comes a time when humanity is called upon to shift to a new level of consciousness to reach a higher moral ground.” – Wangari Maathai (Climate Activist).
Climate change is the most alarming threat to our world and it is entwined with another menace, gender injustice. The adverse effect of climate wavering is leaving women vulnerable to a striking extent. The issue of gender disparity isn’t inseparable from the environment and that’s why women are at the forefront of it. They are leading the biggest crisis resolutely.
In our very unequal world today, it’s startling how many people are left behind. People are suffering majorly with polluted air stuffing their lungs. The quality of food is declining severely, causing diseases and undernourishment.
We are in dire need of working in solidarity for the betterment of our living standard. Mother nature needs to be healed as early as possible. For that, women all over the world should be escaped from their exploitation by carbon emission.
According to the WHO, around 3 billion people still cook and heat in their homes using solid fuels (wood, coal, crop wastes, charcoal and dung) in open fires and leaky stoves. This causes around 4 million deaths a year from indoor smoke inhalation. Something very obvious is that most of those who die are women.
The question arises here, who is bothered by these deaths, the government of developed and developing nations or those who own factories and industries which cause carbon emission? No one is other than the immediate family members.
Women and girls disproportionately suffer health consequences of nutritional deficiencies. The liability of procuring food and water to run the whole family is upon the women. They have to travel farther to collect water in drought-prone areas. They have to suffer a great deal to acquire and cook food. If the quantity of food is not adequate, they are the ones who compromise with less and sometimes no food at all.
We have to ensure a few things while working towards environment and women upliftment. We should be on the side of those who are suffering and affected most. We need to guarantee that they are not left behind in any matter concerning their health and nourishment while dealing with climate change.
Climate injustice is dangerous for women and people who belong to marginalised sections of society. The poor standard of living stunts the growth of children physically as well as mentally. Developed countries must provide aid to underdeveloped ones in terms of renewable resources. Developing countries must grow with minimal carbon emission.
Everyone has to contribute. Single-use plastic needs to be banned wholly. Open defecation is one of those bad practices which affects the environment and women directly. The construction of public toilets and making a toilet mandatory in each house is one remarkable initiative towards amelioration.
Women are mostly malnourished during and after pregnancy because of unavailability of proper nutritious food. One must grow those crops which are high in nutriment. One such crop is Quinoa, which is rich in proteins. The best thing about this crop is that it has many variants which can grow in different soils.
The discharge of environment-friendly deeds and, at the same time, serving women with much-needed equality and gender justice is what we must thrive for. We must act now and act with humanity.