Greta Thunberg has been named TIME magazine’s Person of the Year for 2019.
Previous recipients of the annual honour have included former and current US Presidents — such as Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and Donald Trump — and such significant collectives as ‘The Silence Breaker’ leaders of the #MeToo movement.
16-year-old environmental activist Thunberg has been named as the magazine’s latest Person of the Year, with the publication running an interview Thunberg gave in the boat she travelled back to Europe on following her recent stint in North America campaigning against climate change.
She’s the youngest person to be chosen by the magazine since the honour — which recognises the person or group who “for better or for worse… has done the most to influence the events of the year” — began in 1927.
Speaking to NBC earlier today (December 11), TIME editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal said: “She became the biggest voice on the biggest issue facing the planet this year, coming from essentially nowhere to lead a worldwide movement.”
Thunberg’s much-publicised climate activism in 2019 has drawn praise from the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio, Björk and The 1975 — the latter even invited Thunberg to collaborate with them on a track back in the summer.
Last week, Billie Eilish spoke about her fears of climate change in an interview in which she said she’d had “a million dreams about the world ending”.