#ClimateChange; #ClimateCrisis; #Sweden
Thunberg, 16, was lauded by Time for starting an environmental campaign in August 2018 that became a global movement, initially skipping school and camping out in front of the Swedish parliament to demand action, media reports said.
Greta Thunberg. Image credit: Twitter handle
"In the 16 months since, she has addressed heads of state at the UN, met with the Pope, sparred with the president of the United States and inspired four million people to join the global climate strike on Sept. 20, 2019, in what was the largest climate demonstration in human history," the magazine said.
"Margaret Atwood compared her to Joan of Arc. After noticing a hundredfold increase in its usage, lexicographers at Collins Dictionary named Thunberg's pioneering idea, climate strike, the word of the year," Time said.
"Greta embodies the moral authority of the youth activist movement demanding that we act immediately to solve the climate crisis. She is an inspiration to me and to people across the world," said former U.S. vice-president Al Gore, a longtime environmentalist and added that the magazine had made an excellent choice of reluctant celebrity.
Thunberg, who turns 17 in January, is in Madrid designed to avert potentially catastrophic global warming.
Before the Time honour was announced, in her speech at Madrid at a United Nations climate summit addressing world leaders, Thunberg said,
"It seems to have turned into some kind of opportunity for countries to negotiate loopholes and to avoid raising their ambition...I'm sure that if people heard what was going on and what was said…during these meetings, they would be outraged...This is all wrong. I shouldn't be up here..."You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words," Thunberg said.