Vegan climate activist Greta Thunberg says we must act like our house is on fire–because it is
Vegan climate activist Greta Thunberg has told the World Economic Forum we must act like "our house is on fire" to tackle climate change.
The 16-year-old was speaking on an environment-focused panel at Davos along with Bono, Christiana Figueres, Jane Goodall, Will.i.am and Kengo Sakurada.
The activist told the crowd:
"We are less than 12 years away from not being able to undo our mistakes. In that time, unprecedented changes in all aspects of society need to have taken place, including a reduction of our CO2 emissions by at least 50%.
"At places like Davos, people like to tell success stories. But their financial success has come with an unthinkable price tag. And on climate change, we have to acknowledge we have failed. All political movements in their present form have done so, and the media has failed to create broad public awareness.
"But Homo sapiens have not yet failed.
"Yes, we are failing, but there is still time to turn everything around. We can still fix this. We still have everything in our own hands. But unless we recognise the overall failures of our current systems, we most probably don’t stand a chance.
"Solving the climate crisis is the greatest and most complex challenge that Homo sapiens have ever faced. The main solution, however, is so simple that even a small child can understand it. We have to stop our emissions of greenhouse gases.
Either we do that or we don’t.
"Adults keep saying: 'We owe it to the young people to give them hope.' But I don’t want your hope. I don’t want you to be hopeful. I want you to panic. I want you to feel the fear I feel every day. And then I want you to act.
"I want you to act as you would in a crisis. I want you to act as if our house is on fire. Because it is."
Greta took the train to the venue as she doesn't fly due to the impact it has on the planet.
She recently told Norwegian-Swedish TV show Skavlan that she had stopped flying, gone vegan and doesn't buy new things in order to do her part in tackling climate change.
You can watch Greta's full speech at the World Economic Forum below: