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NGO celebrates Int’l Women’s Day with climate change discussion

By Tom Grant - Mar 09,2022 - Last updated at Mar 09,2022

AMMAN — The non-governmental organisation “NAGAT – Towards a Better Tomorrow for Development and Empowerment” on Tuesday evening held an online seminar under the title “Gender Equality, Climate Change, Peace and Security” in aid of International Women’s Day.

The event gave four women the platform to discuss the impact of these issues in the Kingdom and was attended by over 40 people through the online platform Zoom. 

The seminar was chaired by volunteers from the NGO, which is based in Amman, and was delivered in Arabic with an English translator.

Environment and Climate Change Expert Colette Linton delivered a presentation in which she discussed environmental and community sustainability in the region, saying there are “many parties involved in wanting to tackle these issues”.

Linton said that due to the competitiveness for water in the region, “livelihoods are affected, as well as the local community”, noting that during extreme weather, Jordan experiences a “mess of sorts”.

Linton referred to a GIZ report from 2020 on Jordan’s water supplies, which uncovered that by 2040, pumping water will require about 40 per cent more energy, and rainfall is expected to decrease by 13.6 per cent by 2035.

“The climate is not gender neutral”, Linton continued, noting “women don’t experience the same level of influence or political exposure” in Jordan.

Geography teacher Layla Marie offered solutions at a personal level, discussing the reusage of plastic and glass, as well as planting trees and using solar systems. 

Turning off the lights and unplugging unused appliances are some “of the simple things to save the family budget”, she said.

Lilian Haddad, a civil engineer, discussed waste management in the Kingdom, and how important it is as unproperly disposed waste is behind the majority of greenhouse gases. She also noted that men and women have different perceptions of how waste is disposed, and that “most of the jobs in this industry are male dominant”.

Haddad highlighted how the major challenges facing women are stereotypes, economic deprivation, and coping with house responsibilities whilst caring for children and having a job. 

She said the best solution would be to “define clear gender roles to enhance waste management processes, and reduce the stigma and enhance human rights to allow coping”.

Gender and Women Empowerment Expert and Vice President of NAGAT Majd Hammad concluded the seminar by discussing greenhouse gases, and how the majority of deaths by CO2 consumption in the world today are women. 

She noted that “women need to work with men on decision making at all levels” and that “stereotypes need to be changed”.

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