Teenage Climate Change Activist Greta Thunberg is Named Time's Person Of The Year

Time has recently named the inspirational 16 year old climate change activist Greta Thunberg as their Person of The Year for 2019. 

Over the  past 16 months the young activist has become one of the most instrumental figures in the fight against climate change by inspiring a global movement for the cause.

In August 2018, only 15 at the time, Greta skipped school for 3 weeks opting instead to sit in front of the Swedish parliament in protest of the ongoing climate crisis. She carried a white sign with the writing Skolstrejk för klimatet: ‘School Strike for Climate’ in black paint.

Her actions quickly went viral after she shared them on her Twitter and Instagram. A lot of the youth have been inspired by Greta to skip school on Fridays and instead choose to challenge their governments to address the issue of climate change. 

In September the largest climate change strike in history occurred as millions in multiple countries across the planet protested against the handling of the crisis at hand.

Time stated, “In the 16 months since, she has addressed heads of state at the UN, met with the Pope, sparred with the President of the United States and inspired 4 million people to join the global climate strike on September 20, 2019, in what was the largest climate demonstration in human history.” 

Announcing Time’s decision on NBC, 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.”

In September, after sailing across the Atlantic Ocean for nearly 14 days in a zero-emissions racing yacht, Greta delivered an emotional address to the UN General Assembly at the Climate Action Summit in New York City. She stated, “I shouldn’t be up here. I should be back in school on the other side of the ocean”

“You have come to us young people for hope. How dare you? You have stolen my childhood with empty words. Yet, I’m one of the lucky ones.” 

According to Time Greta has “succeeded in creating a global attitudinal shift, transforming millions of vague, middle-of-the-night anxieties into a worldwide movement calling for urgent change.”

“She has offered a moral clarion call to those who are willing to act, and hurled shame on those who are not.”

Time reflected on the her influence stating, “it all happened so fast. Just over a year ago, a quiet and mostly friendless teenager woke up, put on her blue hoodie, and sat by herself for hours in an act of singular defiance.

“Fourteen months later, she had become the voice of millions, a symbol of a rising global rebellion.”