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Women for Climate Justice Leading Protection of Water UN Side Event | March 23

Please save the date and join us on Thursday, March 23 at 2:00pm Eastern Time for our upcoming virtual event: "Women for Climate Justice Leading Protection of Water," a formal side event for the UN Water conference.

At this official virtual UN Side Event, grassroots women leaders, water protectors, and international policy experts, will address the impacts of climate change and destructive projects on global water, and share ongoing solutions and strategies for the protection of oceans, freshwater, rivers, and aquatic ecosystems based in a climate justice framework. Confirmed speakers include:

  • Great-Grandmother Mary Lyons | Band of Ojibwe, Ojibwe Elder, Women of Wellbriety, International, United Nations Observer on Women/Indigenous Issues, Turtle Island/USA

  • Kathy Jetñil-Kijiner | Poet, Director for Marshallese youth nonprofit Jo-Jikum, and Climate Envoy, Marshall Islands

  • Alexandra Narvaez (Cofán) | Indigenous rights & Land Defender, Goldman Prize Winner, Ecuador

  • Maude Barlow | Founding Member of the Council of Canadians, Co-Founder, the Blue Planet Project, Canada

  • Aurora Conley | Bad River Ojibwe, Anishinaabe Environmental Protection Alliance, Turtle Island/USA

  • Vasser Seydel | President at The Oxygen Project, USA

  • Moderation and Comments by Osprey Orielle Lake | Executive Director, Women's Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN)


This event is taking place during the UN 2023 Water Conference in New York City, which is expected to adopt the Water Action Agenda as a main outcome representing voluntary commitments of countries and stakeholders to meet the global water-related goals and targets.

The conference opens March 22, on World Water Day, and WECAN is submitting a commitment and releasing a Call to Action today urging governments to increase and improve their ambition to protect global water sources by enacting a rights-based approach and ensuring women’s leadership in decision- making spaces.

The most recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), released March 20, clearly notes how climate change has already caused widespread impacts on human systems and altered terrestrial, freshwater and ocean ecosystems worldwide. Within this context the Call to Action provides analysis and studies demonstrating how women’s leadership and rights-based approaches can protect freshwater and ocean ecosystems worldwide.

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