It has long been recognised that women are the primary users and potential stewards of many natural resources vital for basic survival.
Women’s lives are intrinsically linked to natural resources such as land, water and forests, which are an integral part of an ecosystem that is becoming vulnerable.
One cannot separate women from environmental issues. They are significant actors in efforts to conserve the environment.
Women and children tend to suffer more from the negative effects of climate change. This phenomenon causes environmental degradation, worsens poverty and further disempowers women.
Women’s day-to-day contact with the environment has deepened their knowledge and they are likely to offer sustainable solutions to climate change mitigation and adaptation.
Unfortunately, their involvement in policy making and natural resource management is minimal as they rarely take part in boardroom meetings or high-profile development workshops.
To improve natural resource management and alleviate poverty in rural areas, women must be engaged in the planning, implementation and monitoring of conservation efforts.
Counties need to come up with a fund targeting women groups involved in environmental conservation.
MWARI MAINA, Nyeri.