The Women’s Carbon Standard (WCS) is a set of project design and implementation requirements that complement existing compliance or voluntary carbon standards, or other ecosystem services programs.
The WCS specifically includes measures to integrate and measure women’s empowerment and participation in carbon projects. The WCS will quantify beneficial outcomes for women, their families and communities.
Why a Women’s Carbon Standard?
In most of the world, women comprise the majority of farmers and resource managers, yet are often excluded from decision-making and access to resources. Because of their roles as providers and care-givers, women are often seen as being most vulnerable to the negative impacts of climate change.
However, women need not be cast as victims, they can also be primary actors in climate change mitigation when systems exist to support their roles, and their knowledge in managing natural resources is recognized and valued. The WCS provides a structured system to accomplish this.
How will the Women’s Carbon Standard be implemented?
Existing or new climate change mitigation projects should assess how the WCS can be integrated into their project. Any type of carbon emissions reduction project is potentially applicable: forestry, energy, agriculture, etc. Projects must plan for and measure progress in six domains: Income and Assets, Time, Education and Knowledge, Leadership, Food Security and Health.
Once projects are defined and underway their outcomes will be monitored and measured. The resulting social benefit augmented carbon credits will command a higher market price. WOCAN’s objective is to return as much carbon credit revenue from the sale of Women’s Carbon Standard credits as possible back to women and their communities.
“A small project, producing limited credits in a way that brings health, social and economic benefits to the local population, whilst protecting and enhancing the local environment, will command a much higher price than a large scale technology, where the sole benefit is carbon reduction.” Edward Hanrahan, Executive Director, ClimateCare
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Video: WOCAN Launched the Women’s Carbon Standard in Bangkok