GLOBAL WARMING AND GENDER EQUITY
During the last years, the world has witnessed a set of changes to the Earth's climate as the result of the increasing global average temperatures, widely known as global warming. Those changes are manifested through more frequent and irregular hydro-meteorological phenomena, such as intense cyclones and hurricanes or irregularities in seasonal rainfall patterns. In these situations, not all people have the same capacities to face the consequences of global warming. This happens because capacities depend on the social differences constructed among people at a certain place and time. Within these differences we find those related to gender. As the result of the different beliefs about roles that women and men are supposed to play in many societies, women have more difficulties to access to resources, education and decision-making processes. Consequently, they are the most affected when a natural event occurs and even after it. But gender perspective related to global warming is not only about how it affects women, it is about how the different vulnerabilities, capacities, contributions and necessities of men and women determine their abilities to face the impacts of global warming. This is why it is necessary to integrate a gender perspective in global warming policies. The following lines will describe what global warming is and the matters that it implies, especially for gender equity, as well as the importance to include the gender perspective on the climate change agenda.
1. Climate change and global warming
Nowadays, climate change is a term that is frequently used in media, politics and academia, even when it is not a recent event. In fact, climate change has taken place on Earth since its formation. As many studies have confirmed, our planet has experienced different natural climate changes on its atmosphere in different periods of time, and those changes have allowed the existence of life as we know now. However, in recent decades, scientists have observed an abrupt alteration on the natural variability of global and regional climate, manifested in a fast increase of global average temperatures. This phenomenon, which has received the name of global warming, has raised concerns among the scientist community, since higher temperatures can lead to more frequent and irregular hydro-meteorological phenomena - such as intense cyclones and hurricanes or irregularities in seasonal rainfall patterns - the melting of the ice caps and glaciers and the raising of sea levels (Landa, Magaña and Neri, 2008: 36).
2. Global warming and inequality as problems of development
Because of the menace that effects of global warming can represent to human beings, a large number of researches were realized, in order to find its main causes and even stop increasing temperatures. Nevertheless, the results casted were unexpected and caused numerous debates among people from different areas within...