United Nations has called on
businesses, governments, and
civil society to achieve Sustainable
Energy for All by 2030
Unpacking the Gender-energy-Poverty Nexus
August 20, 2014
Energy interventions worldwide are implemented in gender-neutral ways, even though men and women have different opportunities in relation to both energy access and energy use, says the ENERGIA International Network on Gender and Sustainable Energy. They recently outlined an ambitious new research project aimed at closing the gap on the lack of evidence linking gender, energy access and poverty. A gender approach to the gap in research will help inform policy and action and consequently benefit equally men and women in poverty and help achieve the UN Sustainable Energy for All initiative’s objective of universal access to modern energy services by 2030.
While electrification can bring broad developmental benefits irrespective of gender by enabling the use of labor-saving devices, enabling livelihoods, better healthcare and educational outcomes, increased safety, greater political participation and so on, there are specific benefits that accrue to women as a result of their access to decentralized energy systems. These include opportunities for income generation by becoming energy entrepreneurs, and greater empowerment through participation in village and community level schemes to operate and maintain energy systems.
With financial assistance from the UK’s Department for International Development, ENERGIA is embarking on a five-year research program to generate and analyze empirical evidence on the links between gender, energy and poverty, and translate this evidence into recommendations for energy policy and programs. Find more about Energia’s gender and energy research program here.