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  • Greta Thunberg (C) takes part in a protest in Paris, France, Feb. 22, 2019.

    Greta Thunberg (C) takes part in a protest in Paris, France, Feb. 22, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

Published 14 March 2019

The 16-year-old political activist set in motion the "Climate Strike", a collective action against human-made environmental damages.

The 16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg, who became famous for requesting concrete action against climate change, was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by a group of Norwegian socialist lawmakers.

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"We have proposed Greta Thunberg because climate threats are perhaps one of the most important contributions to war and conflict," Norwegian Socialist MP Andre Ovstegard said and added that the global youth movement she triggered is "a major contribution to peace."

In summer of 2018, Thunberg began a strike every Friday in front of the Swedish Parliament to demand more effective measures from governments against climate change.

She also gave a speech at the 2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Poland, in which she called for action to safeguard the living conditions of future generations. This gave her huge visibility among environmental activists, a new generation of whom have been staging "climate strikes" across the world since the beginning of this year.

At the 2019 World Economic Forum in Davos, an elite forum where around 3,000 business and political leaders gathered, Thunberg slammed the mainstream public discourse preaching that the climate crisis is something that all social groups have contributed to.

“Some companies, some decision makers in particular have known exactly what priceless values they have been sacrificing to continue making unimaginable amounts of money. ... I think many of you here belong to that group of people,” she said, as reported by The Nation.

The next global youth strike, which was called through social networks for March 15, will take place in more than 100 countries. The movements' ability to unite people intergenerationally has already increased.

For instance, thousands of Belgians workers will join the March 15 climate strike in Antwerp, Bruges, Liege, and Brussels.

“This is the first time we have had a political strike together with young people. Maybe we’re at the beginning of a new era. I hope so,” Gina Heyrman, a spokeswoman for the 1.6 million-strong socialist trades union ABVV-FGTB, told The Guardian and commented that “everyone talks about the climate now. Everyone is aware of it, thanks to the students.”

This year's Nobel Peace Prize has 304 candidates, 219 of whom are individuals and 85 are organizations. The possibility of a young woman winning the Nobel prize, however, is not unprecedented.

Malala Yousafzai is a Pakistani activist for female education was awarded the Nobel Laureate at age 17.

The 2018 Nobel Peace Prize was also awarded to Congolese Denis Mukwege and Iraqi Nadia Murad for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war in armed conflicts.


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