The Circle of Global Business Women (CBGW) is a global network of intelligent and innovative women who are authentic in their endeavours to create a leadership shift globally. With a mission to connect women worldwide, leverage resources and create a global community of women who are empowered, CBGW aims to be the leading global women organisation in empowerment, leadership and innovation.
Why is it important for women to be part of efforts to mitigate climate change?
Globally, women are disproportionately impacted by climate change, largely because of continued inequality in socio-economic opportunities and familial status. But rather than focusing on women as victims of climate change, we leverage women as leaders, designers and implementers of sustainability solutions. Research shows that organisations with women leaders tend to think more long-term and perform better against a wide range of measures, including sustainability. Additionally, gender diverse teams are more innovative. Through inclusive innovation, we will be successful in combating climate change.
How does the CGBW encourage members to implement environmentally sustainable practices, and how has COVID-19 impacted your work?
We empower our strong network of women to be part of the global environmental strategy and implement new sustainability practices to raise awareness as economic agents of climate change. We also encourage our members to reduce environmental waste, such as cutting down paper usage. The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in our members shifting away from traveling for in-person meetings and events and instead holding virtual meetings and video conferences, which has had a significant environmental impact.
What are examples of innovative ways your members have addressed climate change?
We have seen a variety of new initiatives to confront climate change among members of our agribusiness sector. BEE African is one of our members that is dedicated to cultivating rural women’s income through honey production and creating awareness about the role of bees in the food chain. This program has not only promoted biodiversity, but it has also created possibilities for women and youth to earn a decent income, and thus escape poverty. We also partner with Lefakong Farming to provide sustainable resources and create new ways for farming healthy, organic moringa.
What are the climate goals CGBW has in place for the next decade?
Because we know that women empowerment and their inclusion in implementing climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies is critical to success, we have developed a climate charter with five goals to scale inclusive climate action and push towards a sustainable and equal world. The goals include:
Achieving gender equality in climate decision-making bodies by 2030.
Raising awareness of the interactions between gender and climate and providing girls with access to education and green jobs.
Improving access to essential and productive means to enable women’s full engagement in climate action.
Integrating gendered data to highlight and inform the development of gendered policies.
Financing and developing gender responsive and scalable socio-economic and technological climate conditions.
We know these are achievable goals that will drive the whole world closer to addressing climate change.