State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

Malala Spurs a COP26 Discussion on Links Between Girls, Learning and Cutting Climate Risk

photos of Katindi Sivi, Malala Yousafzai, Xiye Bastida

The COP26 climate negotiations under way in Glasgow, Scotland, aim to build global momentum on steps slowing climate change and cutting climate impacts on the world’s most vulnerable nations and peoples.

A growing force shaping these talks is evidence from around the world that women of all ages face the biggest risks from an overheating climate and the deadly lack of clean energy in hundreds of millions of households. Campaigners are in Glasgow to show how boosting girls’ opportunities in school and society can go a long way toward advancing climate goals.

I recently participated in a conversation on these issues sparked by Malala Yousafzai, the brilliant young advocate for girls’ education who survived a Taliban assassination attempt in Pakistan in 2012 and has massively expanded her work since then.

Malala reached out ahead of the climate talks to me and a couple of amazing young women: the Indigenous climate campaigner Xiye Bastida, and African futurist Katindi Sivi. I offered some insights gleaned in more than three decades on the climate beat.

Read our exchange here.

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