Greta Thunberg on the climate crisis: “The people in power have given up”

The Swedish activist has become the figurehead for the movement to save the planet

Greta Thunberg has criticised authorities around the world in their handling of the climate crisis in a new interview.

The Swedish activist became the figurehead for the movement to halt climate change and save the planet after going on strike from school back in 2018.

Speaking to Rolling Stone, Thunberg said: “It seems like the people in power have given up. They say it’s too hard – it’s too much of a challenge. But that’s what we are doing here. We have not given up because this is a matter of life and death for countless people.”

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She also discussed her motivations for starting her activism, which began after her class were shown a film at school about plastic waste in the ocean. “I felt very alone that I was the only one who seemed to be worried about this,” she said. “I was the only one left in this sort of bubble. Everyone else could just continue with their lives as usual and I couldn’t do that.”

Greta Thunberg
Greta Thunberg delivers a speech in Bristol. CREDIT: Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images

Thunberg said she was inspired by the survivors of the Parkland school shooting, who went on to organise the March For Our Lives and challenge gun control laws in the US. “I thought what the Parkland students did was so brave,” she said.

“Of course, it was not the only thing that got me out of that feeling. I did it because I was tired of sitting and waiting. I tried to get others to join me, but no one was interested and no one wanted to do that. So I said, ‘I’m going to do this alone if no one else wants to do it.’”

In February, Thunberg took part in the Youth Strike 4 Climate protest in Bristol, addressing the crowd at the event. She told the crowd that world leaders were “behaving like children” so “it falls on us to be the adults in the room.

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“This emergency is being completely ignored by the politicians, the media and those in power. Basically, nothing is being done to halt this crisis despite all the beautiful words and promises from our elected officials.”

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