On May 24, the Clean Energy Education and Empowerment (C3E) International Initiative celebrated the second anniversary of its Equal by 30 Initiative, which calls for public commitments by private and public sector organizations to work toward equal pay, equal leadership, and equal opportunities for women in the clean energy sector by 2030.
The United States is a proud signatory of Equal by 30, and has signed on to the public sector principles of the initiative to lead by example in taking concrete steps to promote gender equality, so that our lessons can serve as an example for others. The U.S. Department of Energy is aiming to integrate a gender lens into all levels of our work, mainstreaming gender equality into our organizational culture and process.
Equal by 30 asks organizations, companies, and governments to endorse principles, then take concrete action to accelerate the participation of women in the clean energy sector, and close the gender gap.
The Initiative has reached 145 signatories, including the governments of Sweden, Finland, the United Kingdom, Japan, Germany, United States, France, Norway, Austria, the Netherlands, and Nova Scotia.
Research consistently shows that a diverse workforce and gender-diverse leadership get stronger results. The United States is an active member of both the C3E International initiative and the Equal by 30 campaign. We are committed to working towards equal leadership, equal pay, and equal opportunities for women in the clean energy sector.
The disparities in women’s participation in the energy sector demand action, and we join the other signatories of this campaign in taking this seriously. Your organization can join in this critical work and sign on to Equal by 30 to elevate this cause and share your commitment to act.
Equal by 30 was launched on May 24 2018 by Canada and Sweden and the Clean Energy Ministerial in Copenhagen. It operates under the banner of the Clean Energy Education Empowerment (C3E) International Initiative, which works to advance the transition to a low carbon economy through advancing women’s participation and leadership in the clean energy sector.
I’m honored to serve as the Vice Chair of C3E International, alongside Annette Hollas, Policy Analyst with Natural Resources Canada, as the Chair of the Initiative. C3E International is a multilateral initiative, and is an International Energy Agency (IEA) Technology Collaboration Programme and a Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) Initiative. There are eleven countries in C3E International so far, and these ranks continue to grow as more countries hear about the Initiative’s goals and work.
According to the C3E International Status Report on Gender Equality in the Energy Sector (2019), in data collected from Finland, Chile, Sweden, Italy, Canada, Austria, and Australia, the country with the highest percentage of women as Presidents of Energy Companies was Italy with 43 percent—the next-highest was Sweden at 16 percent and others were under 6 percent. In the rank of CEO or other similar positions, women made up 17 percent and 16 percent in Sweden and Canada, respectively, and under 7 percent in all other surveyed countries. The world has a ways to go on equal leadership in clean energy, but a will to act and see changes in this landscape.
The impressive commitments made by Equal by 30 signatories are sure to be game-changer for these statistics as the work continues, and as the movement grows to harness all possible talent and create a gender diverse clean energy sector.