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Tackling violence against women and girls in the context of climate change

April 2022

Violence against women and girls (VAWG) and climate change are two of the most pressing global emergencies and sustainable development challenges of our time.

VAWG is the most widespread and pervasive human rights violation worldwide, affecting more than an estimated one in three women throughout their lifetime. Climate change is threatening our planet’s sustainability with devastating social, cultural, economic, health and human rights impacts, affecting women and girls disproportionately, especially the most marginalized groups. It is also a serious aggravator of the different forms of VAWG. The shadow pandemic of VAWG during COVID-19 exemplified the surge of violence that occurs during crises and disasters. 

While there has been increased international attention over the last decade in understanding and addressing gender-climate issues, the intersections between climate change and VAWG have received much less focus.

This paper provides a brief overview of the evidence of the impact of climate change on VAWG and makes recommendations across both the climate change and ending VAWG sectors.