Extreme weather and climate linked to gender-based violence?



by LORENZO CIOTTI

Extreme weather and climate linked to gender-based violence?

The main forces behind extreme weather events these disasters are closely linked to climate change and natural weather cycles, alongside human-induced global warming: since 1970 the global average temperature has increased by 0.5 ° C and the main cause are the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, the concentration of which has increased as a result of human activities.

The addition of heat has increased the possibility of severe heat waves, droughts and other forms of extreme weather conditions. Heatwaves consist of periods in which abnormal temperature rises are recorded, relative to a local climate.

They are caused by the continuous increase in temperatures, often related to high humidity, strong solar radiation and the absence of ventilation, and are formed when the high pressure at the top strengthens, remaining on a region for several days or weeks.

If they occur over prolonged periods they can be associated with drought phenomena. In recent years they have become more frequent due to global warming, which, at a meteorological level, manifests itself precisely through these.

The causes of these phenomena, in addition to the environmental ones, are risks for the health of the elderly, children and people suffering from chronic diseases. The study: Extreme events and gender-based violence: a mixed-methods systematic review, published on the The Lancet.

Planetary health, explained: "The intensity and frequency of extreme weather and climate events are expected to increase due to anthropogenic climate change. This systematic review explores extreme events and their effect on gender-based violence (GBV) experienced by women, girls, and sexual and gender minorities.

We searched ten databases until February, 2022. Gray literature was searched using the websites of key organizations working on GBV and Google. Q uantitative studies were described narratively, whereas qualitative studies underwent thematic analysis.

We identified 26 381 manuscripts. 41 studies were included exploring several types of extreme events (ie, storms, floods, droughts, heatwaves, and wildfires) and GBV (eg, sexual violence and harassment, physical violence, witch killing, early or forced marriage, and emotional violence).

were predominantly cross-sectional. Although most qualitative studies were of reasonable quality, most quantitative studies were of poor q uality. Only one study included sexual and gender minorities. Most studies showed an increase in one or several GBV forms during or after extreme events, often related to economic instability, food insecurity, mental stress, disrupted infrastructure, increased exposure to men, tradition, and exacerbated gender inequality.

These findings could have important implications for sexual-transformative and gender-transformative interventions, policies, and implementation. High-quality evidence from large, ethnographically diverse cohorts is essential to explore the effects and driving factors of GBV during and after extreme events. "