W4RES participated in the webinar “Engaging women on the energy transition”
The DECIDE project organised a webinar on 8 March 2022 dedicated to the role of women in the European energy transition. The DECIDE project aims to be a game changer supporting consumers and prosumers to accelerate their impact in the energy market.
Q-Plan's project manager and W4RES coordinator Ioannis Konstas presented the perspectives of women in the Renewable Heating and Cooling market.
Throughout his presentation Mr. Konstas emphasised the importance of men being more engaged in gender issues and in contributing to women's engagement.
The first thing M.Konstas explained was the difference between the real involvement of women in the RHC sector and men’s perception of the issue. According to a survey and data, men believe women participate just as much as they do. However, the reality is different: women in public authority positions are scarce in the RHC sector.
As Mr. Konstas noted, stereotypes play a major role in the RHC sector: hiring practices are more biased, women often think they lack the skills to work in this field, and they are aware of the gender wage gap.
Furthermore, there is a clear lack of support for women who want to become entrepreneurs and work in management. Work-life balance is still a challenge for women, and they do not have adequate representation in decision-making positions. The support in European countries differs as well.
Finally, Mr. Konstas presented the instruments that the W4RES project uses to support women such as a mix of capacity building and business support in RHC. To support women in the energy sector, there is still much to be done.
Presentation of W4RES during the Climate Chance Summit
Marilys Louvet, from Women Engage for a Common Future (WECF), made a presentation during the Climate Chance Summit, organised on 7 and 8 March in Nantes (France). The Climate Chance Summit Europe aims to underline and further political proposals from local authorities, businesses and citizens to strengthen the European Green Deal when achieving the objective of reducing CO2 emissions by 55% by 2030 (Fit for 55).
Ms. Louvet presented the flexible and cost-effective support measures for women leading RHC projects, supported by W4RES. She explained that these measures are deployed on the field, offering technical and business support to cut down project development timings and efforts as well as to sidestep legal, institutional, and financial challenges, setting in motion feasible and sustainable business models that fit to the market.
Ms. Louvet also explained that women represent only 32% of the workforce in the renewable energy sector and occupy only one third of management positions, based on IRENA’s publication on ”Renewable energy, a gender perspective”. She also added that women are more affected by energy poverty due to financial, cultural, physiological and health factors.
Finally, Ms. Louvet highlighted the support activities developed by W4RES’s partners such as decision-maker empowerment or capacity building programme for male dominated private sector of RHC.