Swedish Teenager Wants Action, not “Empty Words”

Greta Thunberg Passionately Addresses UN Leaders

Greta Thunberg addressed the United Nations leaders in New York on Sept. 23 and expressed her displeasure with their lack of action to prevent climate change.

The sixteen-year-old climate activist from Sweden spoke with passion about global warming and repeatedly scolded world leaders for their empty promises to limit carbon emissions. Her campaign to raise awareness for climate change started over a year ago when she began protesting alone outside of the Swedish parliament buildings.

“This is all wrong. I shouldn’t be up here. I should be back at school on the other side of the ocean. Yet you have come to us young people for hope. How dare you!” said Thunberg in her speech at the UN Climate Summit. “You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction, and all you can talk about is money. You are failing us.”

Many world leaders attended Thunberg’s address, but POTUS Donald Trump was not present. Trump focused his political priorities on protecting religious freedom in America rather than addressing the international climate crisis. Trump stayed silent while German Chancellor Angela Markel announced her plans for reducing carbon emissions, and he left after spending approximately 15 minutes at the Climate Summit.

Trump later took to social media to publish a sarcastic tweet mocking Thunberg’s impassioned speech.

“She seems like a very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future,” said Trump via Twitter.

On Sept. 25 Thunberg was named one of four winners of the Right of Livelihood Award, also known as the “Alternative Nobel.” This award was created in 1980 by Swedish-German philanthropist Jakob von Uexkull to honor the efforts that he felt were being ignored by the Nobel Prize committee.

The prize foundation awarded Thunberg “for inspiring and amplifying political demands for urgent climate action reflecting scientific facts.” They added that Thunberg “personifies the notion that everyone has the power to create change. Her example has inspired and empowered people from all walks of life to demand political action.”

Thunberg is not alone in wanting action on climate change. Thunberg led the Fridays for Future movement’s largest global strike yet on Friday, Sept. 20. The strike included over 2,500 events across 150 countries.

To get involved in climate action, please visit https://www.fridaysforfuture.org/.

Photo retrieved from @gretathunberg via Instagram

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