It could be argued that without Greta Thunberg, there would be no youth climate strike movement. The 16-year-old Swedish climate activist has been striking outside of the parliament building in Stockholm since last August, and is the founder of the Fridays for Future youth climate strike movement. Her impassioned speeches have left politicians speechless and millions of young people inspired around the world. “Our house is falling apart and our leaders need to start acting accordingly because at the moment they are not,” Greta demanded of Members of the European Parliament and EU officials in Strasbourg in April.
Greta’s bravery and relentless dedication to strike has been credited by young climate activists around the world for inspiring them to take up the mantle in their own cities, including Alexandria Villasenor in the USA and Leah Namugerwa in Uganda. Through her example, Greta has helped to galvanize a global youth strike movement that has brought more than 1.6 million young people into the streets around the world to demand greater protections for our planet.
As Greta said in a 2018 COP24 address to world leaders that cemented her status as a bold and fearless force for change, “I’ve learned you are never too small to make a difference. And if a few children can get headlines all over the world just by not going to school, then imagine what we could all do together if we really wanted to.”