The energy transition is essential and underway, but what are the risks and opportunities that the green energy revolution represents for the realisation of women's rights? How can we prevent the replication of extractive practices commonly associated with fossil industries? How can we promote renewable energy models that promote women's participation and the eradication of energy poverty?
The series "Portraits of a Feminist Energy Transition" seeks to showcase the stories of women activists and human rights defenders advcating for a just energy transition. A new energy system that protects the environment, advances gender equality and provides safe, affordable and sustainable access to energy.
Although women play a critical role in the management and use of energy resources in households and their communities, they face common challenges linked to systemic discrimination, energy poverty and lack of representation in the development of the new renewable energy sector. We cannot accelerate the move towards sustainable energy systems without bringing to the centre the voices of women and communities who have historically been left behind in energy decision-making spaces.
In the context of COP26 and when discussing an energy transition that involves an unprecedented technical and technological shift from one source of energy to another and counteracting the effects of climate change, the civil society organisations, Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (GI-ESCR) and the Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense (AIDA), with the support of FES-Geneva, launch the first video in the series that tells the story of Maria, an indigenous woman from the Maya Chuj ethnic group living in the Yich K'isis micro-region of Guatemala.
It is only through women's stories and experiences that we can reduce the potential risks of the energy transition and catalyse the transformative power of renewable energy to advance gender equality and a low carbon future for all.