Greta Thunberg's life story so far is a profound example of how to be effective. See links and videos below to learn more about Greta.
Rather than internalizing the pain and feeling that there's nothing one person can do, find a small action you can take. Allow others to join you. Don't be surprised if you do end up changing the world for the better!
Inspired by Greta's weekly school strike, the movement spread. On March 15, students in more than 90 countries and more than than 1,200 cities around the world plan to join the school strike for the climate in what could be one of the largest environmental protests in history.
Caution: Don't get distracted by the details of the stories of youth activism. Instead, stay committed to action.
15 year old activist Greta Thunberg speaks truth to power at the UN COP24 climate talks in December 2018:
"My name is Greta Thunberg. I am 15 years old. I am from Sweden.
I speak on behalf of Climate Justice Now.
Many people say that Sweden is just a small country and it doesn't matter what we do.
But I've learned you are never too small to make a difference.
And if a few children can get headlines all over the world just by not going to school, then imagine what we could all do together if we really wanted to. But to do that, we have to speak clearly, no matter how uncomfortable that may be.
You only speak of green eternal economic growth because you are too scared of being unpopular. You only talk about moving forward with the same bad ideas that got us into this mess, even when the only sensible thing to do is pull the emergency brake.
You are not mature enough to tell it like is. Even that burden you leave to us children. But I don't care about being popular. I care about climate justice and the living planet.
Our civilization is being sacrificed for the opportunity of a very small number of people to continue making enormous amounts of money.
Our biosphere is being sacrificed so that rich people in countries like mine can live in luxury. It is the sufferings of the many which pay for the luxuries of the few.
The year 2078, I will celebrate my 75th birthday. If I have children maybe they will spend that day with me. Maybe they will ask me about you. Maybe they will ask why you didn't do anything while there still was time to act.
You say you love your children above all else, and yet you are stealing their future in front of their very eyes.
Until you start focusing on what needs to be done rather than what is politically possible, there is no hope. We cannot solve a crisis without treating it as a crisis.
We need to keep the fossil fuels in the ground, and we need to focus on equity. And if solutions within the system are so impossible to find, maybe we should change the system itself.
We have not come here to beg world leaders to care. You have ignored us in the past and you will ignore us again.
We have run out of excuses and we are running out of time.
We have come here to let you know that change is coming, whether you like it or not. The real power belongs to the people.
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- Greta Thunberg, schoolgirl climate change warrior: 'Some people can let things go. I can't' (The Guardian, March 11, 2019)
- Greta Thunberg: Why I began the climate protests that are going global (New Scientist, March 13, 2019)
- Greta Thunberg full speech at UN Climate Change COP24 Conference (Connect4Climate, December 15, 2018)
- Kids around the world plan to skip school this Friday to demand action on climate change (CNN, March 13, 2019)
- Youth climate change strikers open letter to world leaders (The Guardian, March 1, 2019)
- Greta Thunberg: The disarming case to act right now on climate (TED Talk)