The League of Women Voters put out a press release on March 8, 2010, touting its plan to bring almost 100 "Sisters on the Planet" ambassadors to Washington to lobby Congress on the need to pass cap-and-trade legislation. Even proponents of this legislation widely acknowledge that it will drive up the cost of electricity. The League's press release states, "Women around the world are disproportionately affected by climate change." They would have it right if their statement read: Women around the world are disproportionately affected by climate change policy.

Stay Engaged

Receive our weekly emails!

Having access to electricity may be the single biggest factor in the quality of life of women around the world. In most cultures, women have the family responsibility for cooking. While we take electricity for granted in America, it is estimated that as many as one-third of the world's households do not have electricity. Cooking over dung and wood in poorly ventilated structures leads to premature death from lung and coronary related diseases.

Energy policy that makes it more expensive for developing countries to provide electricity to their citizens only leads to more human suffering and premature death. Perhaps the League of Women Voters would better serve women if they dropped their environmental ideology and replaced it with support for common sense policies that promote technologies like clean coal and nuclear energy. Those technologies would actually help women in developing countries obtain affordable electricity and thereby improve their quality of life.