Weathering Change documents how family planning, girls’ education, sustainable agriculture and environmental conservation are part of the solution. As the world’s population hits 7 billion in 2011, the film calls for expanding access to contraception and empowering women to help families and communities adapt to the effects of climate change.

“A woman’s life is hard, and climate change is making it harder,” says Aregash Ayele, an Ethiopian woman featured in the film. Aregash is 32 years old and lives with her six children in a small farming community in the Gedeo Zone of Ethiopia.

“Because of changing rainfall patterns, crop yields are suffering, and the family doesn’t have enough food for everybody.

Women and Climate Change

Aregash’s story is not unusual. Women living in poverty bear a disproportionate burden of climate change consequences. In many countries, disparities resulting from women’s roles within family and community structures are aggravated by the effects of climate change. Unequal access to education, economic opportunities, land ownership, and health care can undermine women’s well-being and the prospects for a better future for their children and communities.

And yet, women are important agents of change in addressing climate change challenges. In their roles as providers of food, water and fuel, women are instrumental in determining a family’s ability to survive and effectively cope with the impacts of climate change.