Nov 13, 2019

Greta Thunberg to sail from U.S. en route to UN climate summit in Spain

Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg in Hampton, Va., on Tuesday aboard La Vagabonde, the boat she's taking to return to Europe. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg says she can attend the United Nations' climate summit in Spain after all — she's due to set sail across the Atlantic aboard an Australian couple's 48-foot catamaran from Hampton, Va., on Wednesday morning.

The big picture: Thunberg won't fly because of the carbon footprint of air transport. Madrid stepped in to host the Dec. 2–13 UN climate summit after Chile canceled last minute owing to national protests over economic instability.

  • Thunberg requested assistance to attend the talks following the announcement, saying: "It turns out I've traveled half around the world, the wrong way."

What they're saying: Aussies Riley Whitelum and Elayna Carausu, who are documenting their voyage around the world via their Youtube channel "Sailing La Vagabonde," said in a joint statement with Thunberg they decided to help because Thunberg's climate cause is one that's close to their hearts.

  • Thunberg said in the statement that finding a boat "ready to sail back across the North Atlantic in late November is not easy."
  • "But it's amazing to see how many people there are who are willing to help, like Riley, Elayna and Nikki," she said. "By sailing I once again want to highlight the fact that it’s basically impossible to live sustainable in today's societies."

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Greta Thunberg is Time's 2019 Person of the Year

Greta Thunberg. Photo: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

Swedish teen climate activist Greta Thunberg has become the youngest person, at the age of 16 years old, to be selected as Time Magazine's Person of the Year.

Context: Thunberg has received international attention and praise for her work to raise awareness on climate change — symbolizing a generational movement against the issue. She inspired millions of students to go on strike earlier this year, demanding governments take action against pollution.

Go deeperArrowDec 11, 2019

Greta Thunberg completes three-week journey across Atlantic

Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg stands aboard the catamaran La Vagabonde. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

After sailing on a catamaran for three weeks from New York City, teen climate activist Greta Thunberg arrived in Lisbon, Portugal, on Tuesday, AP reports.

Why it matters: Her trip comes as a new scientific report says there is more evidence than ever that the world is getting warmer, per AP. Thunberg opted to take an emission-free catamaran to travel back and forth between the U.S. and Europe ahead of significant climate summits.

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Trump Jr. blasts Time for choosing Greta Thunberg as Person of the Year

Photos: Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images; Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

Donald Trump Jr. blasted Time for picking teen Swedish climate change activist Greta Thunberg to be its 2019 Person of the Year instead of honoring protesters in Hong Kong.

"Time leaves out the Hong Kong protesters fighting for their lives and freedoms to push a teen being used as a marketing gimmick. How dare you?"
Go deeperArrowDec 11, 2019