Who is Greta?

You may have heard her name as she addressed world leaders at the U.N. Climate Action Summit in a powerful and haunting speech.

“How dare you? You have stolen my dreams, my childhood with your empty words. And yet, I’m one of the lucky ones. People are suffering. People are dying. And our ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you?”

Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old Swedish environmental activist, is making waves of impact noted as the “Thunberg Effect." The deep passion and despair she holds at such a young age has captivated the entire world.

According to Greta’s bio on childrenvsclimate.org (Thunberg and 15 other children across the world are petitioning the United Nations for their inaction to global warming) at eight years old, she viewed a climate change documentary in school that shattered her world which she could not move past. Greta sought ways to live a more sustainable and eco-friendly life, as attested to by her two week sailing journey across the Atlantic to attend the U.N. summit in New York City.

One Friday in August 2018, Greta skipped school and held a strike outside of Swedish parliament for government action against climate change. She held a sign “school strike for the climate." She continued to strike every Friday, soon inspiring others to follow suit. The movement has grown worldwide, now known as Friday’s for the Future. On September 20, 2019 over 4 million people joined the strike across countries.

Empowered and rightfully angry youth continue to join Thunberg from all over the world, demanding action from world leaders. Greta is the spark that the world needed to push for change. Thunberg’s message is amplified by millions. We will no longer be complicit. We will not watch our future burn. We will hold those who did nothing accountable.