When the controversial Lamu Coal plant in Kenya was halted by the National Environment Tribunal, it was thanks to the persistent work of activists like Raya Ahmed. The UNESCO World Heritage site of Lamu island in Kenya is under the constant threat of oil pipelines, coal power plants and worsening climate impacts, but women like Raya have refused to budge.
“If a disaster strikes, like floods, droughts or tornadoes, men will run away but women, by nature, will not run,” she said.
It is this steadfast care and struggle that inspired the recognition of International Women’s Day over a century ago. This day was founded in the fight for women’s rights, suffrage, and the working class woman’s struggle to overcome imperialist patriarchal oppression. Today, these same oppressive systems have bred humanity’s greatest challenge yet: the climate crisis. And women across the globe continue to hold these systems accountable, demanding real climate justice. Women continue to care and to struggle.
This weekend is International Women's Day and we want to celebrate the power of women everywhere in the fight for climate justice. Watch and share this message from Raya Ahmed – a woman that fought to halt what would have been a devastating coal plant in Lamu, Kenya.
Posted by 350.org on Thursday, March 5, 2020
Much of this goes unrecognised, but today we choose to bring them to light and to celebrate.
On this International Women’s Day, we recognise the women that are leading the march in climate activism and organising. We celebrate women that are defending their homes through art. We honour women that are documenting our histories so we may rewrite our future.
Join us as we tell these stories and pledge that in the fight for gender equality and climate justice, we will continue to care and to struggle.
“International Women’s Day is a global observation of the millennia-old, complex oppression of women as a class. It is also a celebration of the bravery, audacity, brilliance and creativity of women and allies who challenge, oppose, resist, dismantle and re-imagine what our society can be.”
Samantha Smart Merritt, 350.org
What can you do?
Or tag your favourite women in the climate movement in this tweet.