Swedish climate change activist Greta Thunberg, 16, is testifying before Congress next week at the invitation of House Democrats.
Thunberg will appear Sept. 18 before a joint hearing of a House Foreign Affairs subcommittee and the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis.
She is among a group of young climate activists Democrats invited to testify at the hearing, entitled “Voices Leading the Next Generation on the Global Climate Crisis.”
Thunberg is best known for founding an international movement called Fridays for Future, in which students skip school on Fridays to participate in demonstrations demanding action to combat climate change.
Last month she traveled across the Atlantic Ocean in an emissions-free solar-powered boat, instead of flying, to New York City ahead of her speech on Sept. 23 at the United Nations Climate Action Summit.
“We’re at the point where an entire generation has grown up in the climate crisis,” said Democratic Rep. Kathy Castor of Florida, chairwoman of the Select Climate Crisis Committee. “They know the science, they know the stakes and they know how to rise to the challenge. We need to rise with them.”
Greta, “I want you to panic”. Even if there were an emergency the last thing one should be encouraged to do is panic. That always makes things worse. Clear she is reading from a script. Her 15 minutes are up. https://t.co/DtlgxAd6U6
Greta Thunberg at 2018 TED Talk on her climate worry: If burning fossil fuels was so bad that it threatened our very existence, how could we just continue like before? Why were there no restrictions? Why wasn’t it made illegal? To me, that did not add up. It was too unreal. So when I was 11, I became ill. I fell into depression, I stopped talking, and I stopped eating. In two months, I lost about 10 kilos of weight. Later on, I was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome, OCD and selective mutism. That basically means I only speak when I think it’s necessary – now is one of those moments.”
Greta Thunberg: “Before I started school striking I had no energy, no friends and I didn’t speak to anyone. I just sat alone at home, with an eating disorder. All of that is gone now, since I have found a meaning, in a world that sometimes seems shallow and meaningless to so many people.”
Climate Skeptic Tom Nelson responded: “Greta, if you were to discover that there is no climate crisis, would your life lose all meaning? Do you have any interest at all in natural climate variability?”
From the The book Scenes from the Heart by Greta’s mother: ‘Greta is eleven years old and has gone two months without eating. Her heart rate and blood pressure show clear signs of starvation. She has stopped speaking to anyone but her parents and younger sister, Beata. After years of depression, eating disorders, and anxiety attacks, she finally receives a medical diagnosis: Asperger’s syndrome, high-functioning autism, and OCD. She also suffers from selective mutism—which explains why she sometimes can’t speak to anyone outside her closest family. When she wants to tell a climate researcher that she plans a school strike on behalf of the environment, she speaks through her father.
Teen school striking climate activist Greta Thunberg: ‘I have also been invited to attend these two events, in North and South America. And since time is running out I have decided to try to take a sabbatical year from school and go there. The tricky thing is that it’s on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. And there are no trains going there. And since I don’t fly, because of the enormous climate impact of aviation, it’s going to be a challenge. I haven’t quite figured that out yet. But I’m sure I will get there somehow. We will all have to do the impossible.’
Malizia II, like the rest of the yachts in the Imoca 60 class, is constructed from high-tech carbon fiber composites to make it ultra-light and fast. It is the ultimate play thing of the wealthy elite. These boats are made of hydrocarbons, not to mention all the energy it took to make them. Carbon fiber composites are primarily made from propane and petroleum. This boat was pumped out of the ground…The Monaco Yacht Club is among the sponsors paying for the trip. They removed all the corporate sponsor logos from the yacht so as not to be associated with the capitalist prosperity that built it. Ending air travel is nihilism. Going back to sailing to cross oceans is a 19th-century solution that cannot meet 21st-century travel needs. This makes no economic, logistical, or ecological sense.
While an Associated Press story claimed that “the carbon emissions from their flights will be compensated for,” the irony remained. Yet, the CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News ignored it while covering Thunberg’s arrival. The 130-word AP item said a team “spokeswoman….said it’ll be necessary to fly the crew to the U.S. because the high-profile trip with the 16-year-old Swedish campaigner that left Plymouth on Wednesday was arranged at very short notice” and that they recognize that this is “an imperfect solution.”