Greta Thunberg’s Youth4Climate speech hits hard on ’empty words and promises’

For a moment, Greta Thunberg sounded like a different activist than the world was used to seeing.

“Climate change is not just a threat. It is, above all, an opportunity to create a healthier, cleaner and greener planet that will benefit us all,” said the Swedish climate activist with a bright smile while speaking at the session. Opening of the Youth4Climate Event in Milan, Italy on Tuesday.

Audience members cautiously applauded as Thunberg’s face lit up as he spoke of “green jobs” and a “smooth transition” to a clean economy. But his tone darkened in the middle of his speech: “There is no Planet B. There is no Planet Blah. Blah, blah, blah … Build better. Blah, blah, blah..

It turned out that Thunberg’s unusually corporate lines were meant to show the void behind the slogans of politicians and business leaders when they talk about climate change.

“Thirty years of blah, blah, blah,” Thunberg said scathingly. “Net zero by 2025. By 2050! This is all we heard from our leaders. Words that sound great, but so far have led to no action. Our hopes and dreams were drowned in their empty words and promises. More 50% of all Our CO2 emissions have occurred since 1990 and a third since 2005 “.

Thunberg criticized world leaders for not backing up their slogans and speeches with concrete actions, saying that addressing climate change would not be as simple as creating new green jobs, but rather the deeper social roots of environmental destruction had to be addressed.

“The climate crisis is just the symptom of a much larger crisis … of inequality dating back to colonialism and beyond. A crisis based on the idea that some people are worth more than others and therefore have the right to exploit and steal other people’s lands and resources. It is very naive to believe that we can solve this crisis without facing its roots, “he continued.

He said the time to let politicians decide what is “politically possible” is long past, and suggested a popular movement is needed to force governments to make the drastic changes necessary to avoid the catastrophic impacts of a climate change. warmer.

“We can no longer let the people in power decide what hope is,” he said. “Hope is not passive. Hope is not blah, blah, blah. Hope is telling the truth. Hope is acting. Hope always comes from the people. We want real climate action and we want climate justice.”

Check out the full speech below.

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