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The W+ Standard Wins the 2016 UNFCCC's Momentum for Change Award!

The Momentum for Change initiative is spearheaded by the UN Climate Change secretariat to shine a light on some of the most innovative, scalable and replicable examples of what people are doing to address climate change. Today’s announcement ispart of wider efforts to mobilize action and ambition as national governments work to implement the Paris Climate Change Agreement.

“It is impressive to see so many original and creative ways to tackle climate change,” said Nick Nuttall, UNFCCC Spokesperson. “The W+ Standard is proof that climate action is building in countries, communities, companies and cities everywhere. Not only do this year’s winning activities address climate change, but they also help drive forward progress on many other Sustainable Development Goals, such as innovation, gender equality and economic opportunity.”

The ‘W+ Standard’ was awarded under the Momentum for Change Women for Results focus area for its work to measure women’s empowerment in six domains: time, income/assets, health, leadership, education/knowledge and food security.The measurement of progress results in women-benefit units (W+ units) that buyers can purchase. The sale of units generates revenues that are shared with women beneficiaries and their groups, putting money into the hands of women.

The W+ Standard Pilot Project measured the time saved for 7,200 rural Nepalese women who replaced their wood-generated stoves with biogas stoves, relieving them of the need to collect fuel wood from the forest and saving 2.26 hours per day. By eliminating this time-consuming, labor-intensive task, women gained time for leisure and self-improvement, and to engage in income generation and community activities.

This shift to biogas not only transformed women’s lives but reduced the pressure on forests. To date, the W+ has also been applied to similar biogas projects in Indonesia cook-stove projects in Lao PDR and Honduras, a livelihoods and agroforestry project in Kenya, and a water and sanitation project in Cambodia.

Together with the other winning projects, it will be showcased at a series of special events during the UN Climate Change Conference in Marrakech, Morocco (7-18 November 2016).

The 2016 Lighthouse Activities were selected by an international advisory panelas part of the secretariat’s Momentum for Change initiative, which operates in partnership with the World Economic ForumGlobal Project on Climate Change  and the Global e-Sustainability Initiative.

A full list of winners and more information about each of the 2016 Momentum for Change Lighthouse Activities can be found here: http://bit.ly/m4c-award

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