The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)’s Climate Change 2023 Synthesis report is a sobering reminder of how urgently this global catastrophe needs to be addressed as the globe struggles with the intensifying effects of human-induced climate change. In light of this, the Conference of the Parties to the Convention (COP28) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Dubai on November 30 has emerged as a focal point for talks and initiatives pertaining to a sustainable future.
Notably, it also draws attention to the outstanding achievements made by Indian women who are leading the charge in the battle against climate change.
Dia Mirza: Model Becomes Climate Advocate
Bollywood actress Dia Mirza has made a smooth shift into a committed climate activist. As the United Nations Environment Programme’s (UNEP) National Goodwill Ambassador, Dia has spoken in the UN General Assembly on behalf of India’s sustainability concerns. In addition to her acting career, she produced the film “Kids for Tigers,” which raises awareness of biodiversity protection, in partnership with the Sanctuary Nature Foundation. Dia’s diverse devotion to the environment is demonstrated by her active support of projects that encourage plastic-neutral decisions and her investments in green firms.
Actor turned environmental entrepreneur Gul Panag
Actor, producer, and businesswoman Gul Panag is a fervent supporter of a sustainable future. She offers easy ways for electric vehicle charging all around India with her firm, Sunfuel Electric. Through The Col. Shamsher Singh Foundation, which focuses on gender equality, education, and disaster management, Gul is also devoted to philanthropy. Her efforts also focus on the welfare of the community, indicating her commitment to environmental issues and the underprivileged.
Prajakta Koli: Champion of the Youth Climate
Actor, influencer, and content producer Prajakta Koli has been named the first Youth Climate Champion for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in India. Prajakta, well-known for her “MostlySane” YouTube channel, is a vocal supporter of environmental and climate change causes. Koli, a well-known young hero who is passionate about maximising youth involvement in climate initiatives, is a perfect speaker for COP28 because of her broad contributions to mental health, women’s rights, and the education of girls through numerous international social projects.
As the UNDP India Youth Climate Champion, Prajakta has worked to educate the next generation of thinkers about the negative impacts of global warming, climate change, and biodiversity loss, especially on marginalised populations. Her goal is to mobilise people to take concrete action by telling inspiring tales of how towns, governments, and individuals have come together to improve the environment and society at large.
Entrepreneur for a Greener Future: Pragya Kapoor
Through her non-governmental organisation, the Ek Saath Foundation (ESF), entrepreneur and environmentalist Pragya Kapoor has initiated significant projects that contribute to a cleaner environment. ESF works for social concerns in impoverished communities, including cleaning and raising awareness of cleanliness. Projects such as ‘Project Kuda’ are geared toward establishing a sustainable waste management system that supports a circular economy. Pragya’s dedication to environmental sustainability is demonstrated by her partnership with the Indian Navy for a World Environment Day cleanliness initiative on Carter Road in Mumbai.
Varsha Raikwar: Voice of Change in Radio
With the Women Climate Collective, 25-year-old Madhya Pradesh radio host Varsha Raikwar has become a prominent climate advocate. Varsha uses her voice as a Nat Geo ‘One for Change’ campaign changemaker to inform her Bundelkhand community about resource management and environmental friendliness. Varsha is adamant about ensuring equitable inclusion of women in debates about climate change, even in the face of discrimination based only on gender. Her selection as a United Nations Young Climate Leader for 2021 is evidence of her significant contributions to gender equality and environmental education.
Nidhi Pant: Using Innovation to Empower Women
The founder of S4S (Science For Society) Technologies, Nidhi Pant, is an ideal citizen who practises sustainable environmental practices. Her company provides thousands of women small business owners and entrepreneurs with help through its solar-powered near-farm gate food processing platform. Furthermore, Nidhi is a supporter of the Women Climate Collective (WCC), a collection of individuals dedicated to addressing issues related to gender and climate change. Nidhi’s aim to create a zero-waste food system has been recognized with prizes like the Earthshot Prize 2023, proving her unwavering support for environmental issues.
Jasumatiben Jethabai Parmar and Sangitaben Rathod: Keepers of Conventional Wisdom
Because of the work of Sangitaben Rathod and Jasumatiben Jethabai Parmar, traditional treatments have become more prominent in international climate talks. These women, dressed in eye-catching desi clothes, support the production of organic fertilisers and pesticides from neem leaves and cow urine. Indian women farmers are currently adopting this innovative approach, which is based on conventional knowledge, in addition to maintaining their crops. Their participation in COP28 serves as a reminder of how critical it is to locate and apply indigenous techniques in the battle against climate change.
These women are taking centre stage at COP28, and their varied contributions highlight how important it is for women to lead the charge on climate change. These leaders highlight the diverse strategies required to handle the intricate problems of climate change, ranging from cutting-edge technologies to conventional wisdom. Their attendance at COP28 encourages a worldwide commitment to constructing a sustainable and resilient future for all while also elevating the voices of Indian women.