Please read all of 15-year old Greta Thunberg's speech at the U.N. climate summit in Katowice, Poland.
I school-striked for the climate. Some people say that I should be in school instead. Some people say that I should study to become a climate scientist so that I can “solve” the climate crisis. But the climate crisis has already been solved. We already have all the facts and solutions. And why should I be studying for a future that soon may be no more, when no one is doing anything to save that future? And what is the point of learning facts when the most important facts clearly means nothing to our society?
Today we use 100 million barrels of oil every single day. There are no politics to change that. There are no rules to keep that oil in the ground. So we can no longer save the world by playing by the rules, because the rules have to be changed.
And since our leaders are behaving like children, we will have to take the responsibility they should have taken long ago. [emphasis mine]
Here's Greta Thunberg's TED talk. Youtube wouldn't give the embed code, sorry.
Kevin Anderson notes on COP24
... the ever-present voice of Greta Thunberg soaring like a descant above the monotonic mutterings of the status-quo choir. We need many more voices from her generation prepared to boldly call out the abysmal and ongoing failure of my generation. Applying Occam’s razor to our delusional substitutes for action, this fifteen year old (now sixteen) revealed just how pathetic our efforts have been.
With an even bigger global mobilisation planned for 15 March, she [Greta] feels the momentum is now building.
“I think enough people have realised just how absurd the situation is. We are in the middle of the biggest crisis in human history and basically nothing is being done to prevent it. I think what we are seeing is the beginning of great changes and that is very hopeful,”...
Realized that Greta is a role model to which I fail to live up.
Posted this at Reddit:
I feel as if reality silently morphed into a sci-fi dystopian alternate reality. It's hard to comprehend that informed sane people don't realize our razor's edge of self-extermination, the way Greta Thunberg does. But then I too turn on the TV and escape into fantasy, numbing horror. Thunberg is authentic, while I've split in half and lost much self respect over that.
Here's the thing:
I probably won't live to see the worst of what climate change is going to do to this planet, being that I'm 68 years old at the time of this writing. HOWEVER ... my daughter is 30, and about the time she's ready to retire (if she so chooses) is about the same time that the shit will genuinely hit the fan, meteorologically, unless curative action is taken and damned soon. I happen to care about that because I care about HER.
Don't be surprised at all if, at some point or other, Millennials and Gen Zers are in the streets, demanding action on climate change ... because THEY are the ones who will take it on the chin if we do nothing.
A teenage activist from Sweden who launched a global campaign against climate change has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Greta Thunberg was put forward by three Norwegian politicians who say she has started "a very important peace contribution".
Bill McKibben and Canadian Green Party Leader Elizabeth May praised Greta Thunberg.
He hinted at similar action to come from adults in the business world this fall."The world is changing with ferocious, ferocious speed."
"Humanity’s job is to figure out how to save the planet."
“We’re small, but we’re the many and if we do what we need to do then we can stand up to the big and the few and if we do, then we’ve got a fighting chance,” McKibben said.
image sources: dead horses, McKibben and text from article
This morning I realized that most people can't grasp the "ferocious, ferocious speed" with which McKibben sees the world changing. This isn't due to indifference, or exactly ignorance either. Tribal mentality is still our default, in nationalism, sports, religion, ethnicity, racism etc. Tribal mentality prevents people from grasping the danger because it can't accommodate geologic change. Only people used to thinking in terms of planet-scale change such as Hothouse Earth and Snowball Earth, and changes across tens of thousands of years, have the mental tools to grasp the enormity of what's going on now. Most of us haven't pictured planet-wide change to a new regime. Dinosaur death by comet, which happened fast, is as close as most get. Tribal mentality maxes out grasping regional change over a few hundred years. Most of us can't employ contexts including planetary masses and 100,000 years for a change to reverse. In a geologic context, our current changes occurring with "ferocious, ferocious speed" are the stuff of nightmares, in part because all of us are trapped. The context most people have for "ferocious speed" is a plane falling from the sky or NASCASR, where we are safe observers. We can't imagine that the entire world which has "always" been here (since civilization began) literally changing into an alien planet unsuited for life as we know it. Geology, planetary science and science fiction can help people grasp the scope our actual danger. It's not immigrants or enemies who will devour everyone, it's much scarier.
Then again, corporations aren't designed to operate within such contexts either. This necessarily constrains their boards of directors and CEOs perspectives, because a geologic context is outside of their defined roles. One could neither say such things nor have them heard, as geology is irrelevant to next quarter profit.
See Greta's new 4 minute video.
Oh! To have such a person as a child or a student! As a mother and a teacher, one of my goals was to empower the young to think for themselves, to establish principles upon which they could stand, and to have the courage to take decisive action when they saw injustice.
Greta Thunberg stands as powerful leader of the next generation; hopefully, their voices will be heard and adults begin to act as mentally healthy, mature, adult men and women.
It says something that, already at 8, a situationally mute autistic girl was more mature than over 7 billion adults.