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In 2013, In response to the urgency of our environmental predicament and the global gridlock that continues to halt serious action on climate change, 100 women leaders and visionaries-- 50 women leaders from global south and 50 women leaders from global north-- converged from September 20th to 23rd, 2013 in Suffern, New York for the International Women’s Earth and Climate (IWECI) Summit. Osprey Orielle Lake, WECAN Founder and Executive Director, was the visionary behind the International Women’s Earth and Climate Summit, which brought together global women leaders to draft and implement a 'Women’s Climate Action Agenda', and co-founded the International Women’s Earth and Climate Initiative (IWECI), the precursor initiative of WECAN International.

The Summit participants, hailing from diverse backgrounds in climate and related science, public policy, business, conservation, activism, academia, the arts, faith leadership, and education, met in New York to take stock, and reflect deeply on the origins of the climate crisis, and draft a way out.

Collectively representing over 19 million people worldwide through their organizations, the delegates authored the initial Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network Declaration, which affirms that climate change threatens human rights, women’s rights, Indigenous Rights, the Rights of Nature, and sustainable social justice for all people, and calls for specific, targeted action to change humanity’s course.

The Declaration nurtured the seeds of the WECAN Women’s Climate Action Agenda—a specific action plan that presents some of the best thinking from contemporary women leaders on what we must do to slow and eventually reverse climate change, in order to ultimately realize global sustainability. Please read the complete and revised Women's Climate Action Agenda here.

Delegates collaborate together breakout sessions at the IWECI Summit in 2013. Photo via Lori Waselchuk


Delegate Patricia Gualinga from Sarayaku Ecuador leads a plenary session during the IWECI Summit. Photo via Lori Waselchuk

IWECI Summit Delegates

IWECI Delegate members discuss the role of women's leadership in the global climate movement. Photo via Lori Waselchuk

To achieve intimacy in conversation and to ensure the most productive conversation, IWECI limited Summit delegates to 100. In order to honor diversity and achieve a productive and holistic conversation, and to pay full respect to the international scope of the problem and solutions, IWECI set forth the following criteria in determining Summit delegates:

  • Host a truly international conversation and therefore delegates will be selected from the five UN regions with a focus on frontline women leaders

  • Host a diverse and dynamic conversation and therefore will select delegates representing diversity in age, nationality, expertise and background.

  • Host a cross-sector gathering and therefore delegates from various sectors will be invited, including, but not limited to government, business, non-profits, academia and NGO’s.

Lorena Aguilar
Global Senior Gender Advisor
International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) (Costa Rica)

Rev. Marta Benavides
Theologian, Permaculturist, Educator, Artist
Siglo XXIII (El Salvador)

Sabine Bock
Climate Change Coordinator
Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF) (Germany)

Bridget Burns
Advocacy and Communications Director
Women's Environment and Development Organization (WEDO) (USA)

Aimee Christensen
Founder & CEO
Christensen Global Strategies, LLC (USA)

Melanie DeMore
Musical Performer at the Summit
Vocal Activist (USA)

Nathalie Eddy
Coordinator, Global Gender and Climate Alliance (GGCA) (USA)

Christiana Figueres
Executive Secretary
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) (Costa Rica)

Angelina Galiteva
Founding Board Chair, 

Renewables 100 Policy Institute (USA)

Kristin Graf
Executive Director, Women of Wind Energy (USA)

Patricia Gualinga Montalvo
Indigenous Leader (Sarayaku/Ecuador)

Hon. Connie Hedegaard
European Commissioner for Climate Action
European Commission (Denmark)

Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim
Representative, Indigenous Peoples of Africa Coordinating Committee (Mbororo/Chad)

Lynn Israel
Network Member, Earth Circle, Women's Donor Network (USA)

Aira Kalela
Senior Advisor, Global Gender and Climate Alliance / Women for Environment and Development (Finland)

Rachel Kyte
Vice President for Sustainable Development
The World Bank (UK/USA)

Osprey Orielle Lake
Founder & Co-Director, WECAN / Founder & President, Women's Earth and Climate Caucus (USA)

Wanjira Mathai (Invited)
Green Belt Movement (Kenya)

Anne Marie Miller
CEO and Founder
Sustainable Waste Design (USA)

Noelene Nabulivou
Executive Committee Member
Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN) (Fiji)

Malia Nobrega-Olivera
Director of Strategic Partnerships
Loli Aniau, Makaala Aniau (LAMA) (Climate Change, Climate Alert) (Hawai'i/USA)

Subhashni Raj
Climate Advocate, PhD Student, Jerome L. Kaufman Doctoral Fellow in Food Systems Planning, State University of New York (SUNY), Buffalo, (Fiji)

Kelly Rigg
Executive Director, Global Campaign for Climate Action (GCCA) (Netherlands)

Andrea Santy
Director, Russell E. Train Education for Nature Program, World Wide Fund for Nature

Dr. Vandana Shiva
Indian Philosopher, Environmental Activist, Founder, Navdanya (India)

Reetu Sogani
Grassroots Practitioner and Activist (India)

Janice Turner
D.P.M., M.P.H. and citizen of the Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware. (USA)

Mayalú Waura Txucarramae
Indigenous Leader
Mebêngôkrê Nyre Movement (Kayapó and Waura/Brazil)

Dr. Hala Yousry
Director, Rural Sociology Department
Desert Research Center (Egypt)

H.E. Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak (invited)
Secretary General
Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi (EAD) (United Arab Emirates)

Tzeporah Berman
Author, environmentalist (Canada)

May Boeve
Executive Director (USA)

Casey Camp-Horinek
Native Rights Activist, Environmentalist, Actor
Indigenous Environmental Network (Ponca/USA)

Rucha Chitnis
South Asia Program Director
Women's Earth Alliance (USA)

Bineta Diop
Founder and President
Femmes Africa Solidarité (Senegal)

Rosemary Enie
Director, Community Rights Program
Women's Environment Climate Action Network (WECAN) (Tanzania)

Maggie Fox
President and CEO
Climate Reality Project (USA)

Patricia Glazebrook
Member, Board of Directors
Gender CC — Women for Climate Justice (USA)

Natalia Greene
Consultant for Rights of Nature
Fundación Pachamama (Ecuador)

Hiwot Hailu
Development Activist

Lene Kielsen Holm
Research Scientist and Project Leader
Greenland Climate Research Centre (Inuk/Greenland)

Natalie Isaacs
CEO, Co-Founder
1 Million Women (Australia)

Kosha Joubert
Global Ecovillage Network (South Africa)

Naomi Klein (via Skype)
Author, Activist (Canada)

Melina Laboucan-Massimo
Member of the Lubicon Cree First Nation; Climate and Energy Campaigner
Greenpeace (Canada)

Florina López Miró
Indigenous Women's Biodiversity Network (Kuna, Panama)

Julia Marton-Lefèvre
Director General
International Union for the Conservation of Nature (France/USA/Hungary)

Neha Misra
Chief Collaboration Officer
Solar Sister (India)

Lidy Nacpil
International Coordinator
Jubilee South (Philippines)

Sheila Oparaocha
International Coordinator
ENERGIA International Network on Gender and Sustainable Energy (Netherlands)

Sally A. Ranney
Co-Director, WECAN / Founder & President
eraGlobal Alliance (USA)

Hon. Mary Robinson
Former President of Ireland; Founder
Mary Robinson Foundation for Climate Justice (Ireland)

Liane Schalatek
Associate Director
Washington Office of the Heinrich Böll Stiftung (Germany)

Dr. Swati Shresth
Focal Point for South & East Asia
Global Forest Coalition (India)

Atossa Soltani
Executive Director
Amazon Watch (USA)

Laura Turner Seydel
Captain Planet Foundation (USA)

Jody Williams
Nobel Peace Prize Laureate / Chair
Nobel Women's Initiative (USA)

Suzanne York
Senior Writer
Institute for Population Studies (USA)

Maude Barlow
Author and National Chairperson
The Council of Canadians (Canada)

Shannon Biggs
Director, Community Rights Program
Global Exchange (USA)

Fadoua Brour
Founder, President (MYCM); National Coordinator (AYCM)
Moroccan Youth Climate Movement; Arab Youth Climate Movement (Morocco)

Carmen Capriles
Reacción Climática (Bolivia)

Sally Jewell Coxe
Bonobo Conservation Initiative (USA)

Dr. Sylvia Earle
Marine Biologist, Explorer-in-Residence
National Geographic (USA)

Mirna Fernandez
Education Coordinator
Bolivian Girl Guides Association (Bolivia)

Sascha Gabizon
Executive Director
Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF) (Netherlands)

Dr. Jane Goodall, Dame of the British Empire
Founder, the Jane Goodall Institute & UN Messenger of Peace

The Jane Goodall Institute

Claire Greensfelder
Policy and Organizational Consultant
Conversations with the Earth and WECAN (USA)

Dr. Katherine Hayhoe (via Skype)
Director, Climate Science Center
Texas Tech University (USA)

Thilmeeza Hussain
Voice of Women (VOW) Maldives (Maldives)

Dr. Naoko Ishii
CEO & Chairperson
Global Environment Facility (Japan/USA)

Farah Kabir
Country Director
ActionAid Bangladesh (Bangladesh)

Nadezhda Kutepova
Founder, Planet of Hopes (Russia)

Mary Mavanza
Program Director, Gombe Masito Ugalla (GMU) Ecosystem Program
Jane Goodall Institute Tanzania (Tanzania)

Katherine Lucey
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Solar Sister (USA)

Lucy Mulenkei
Indigenous Information Network (Maasai/Kenya)

Neema Namadamu
Executive Director
Hero Women (Democratic Republic of Congo)

Jacqueline Patterson
Director, Environmental and Climate Justice Program
National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) (USA)

Janet Redman
Sustainable Energy and Economy Network (SEEN), Institute for Policy Studies (USA)

Colleen Ross
Farmer and Vice President
National Farmers Union of Canada (Canada)

Pasang Dolma Sherpa
National Coordinator
NEFIN Global Climate Change Program (Nepal)

Hon. Marina Silva (via Skype)
Environmentalist, Politician & Founder
Instituto Marina Silva (Brazil)

Svitlana Slesarenok
Black Sea Women’s Club/ MAMA-86-Odessa (Ukraine)

Richenda Van Leeuwen
Executive Director, Energy and Climate/Energy Access Initiative
United Nations Foundation (USA)

Laurie Williams, Esq.
Attorney and Volunteer
Citizens Climate Lobby (USA)

The Summit Organizing  Team included:

Osprey Orielle Lake, WECAN Co-Founder and Executive Director; Sally Ranney, WECAN Co-Founder; Claire Greensfelder, Policy/Organization Consultant; Wyolah Garden, Operations Manager; Celia Alario, Communications Consultant; Tania Hack, Communications Associate; Clare Baxter, Production Manager; Miriam Anne Frank, Development & Planning Consultant, Stage Manager; Karin Evans, Special Assistant; Nathalie Lowenthal-Savy, Delegate Coordinator; and Tamela Fish, Outreach Coordinator.           

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