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Greta Thunberg on the state of the climate movement

Interview by KK Ottesen Photo: Luca Bruno/AP

Student and climate activist Greta Thunberg, 18, burst improbably onto the world stage in late 2018 when what began as a one-person school strike outside the Swedish parliament ended up galvanizing a global climate movement to demand immediate action to prevent environmental catastrophe.


Dylan D’Agate

Algae Blooms
Dylan D’Agate, a sixteen year old from Long Island, wrote a book, Monster in the Water , about the dangers of algae blooms (sometimes known as the “red tide”), which both teaches kids about the dangers of pesticides and pollutants and encourages them to take action. He became an “earth blogger” for the Sierra Club (one of many young environmentalists advocating for the planet).


Molly Burhans

In  2016, Molly Burhans, a young cartographer and environmentalist, began documenting the global landholdings of the Catholic Church. In 2019 she won the UN Young Champions of Earth Award . In February, 2021 The New Yorker wrote a spectacular article about the work she is doing to help Pope Francis battle climate change. More here.


Fionn Ferreira

Fionn Ferreira developed a project on microplastic extraction from water for the annual Google Science Fair. The project won the grand prize of $50,000 in educational funding at this year’s event.


Isha Clarke

Student Activist
Isha first made headlines asking California Senator Dianne Feinstein to support a Green New Deal. She has a passion for intersectional activism and feels it is essential to pair environmental activism with environmental justice so we can can create a just and equitable world, while maintaining a livable climate. Read an interview with her at The Guardian.


Alexandria Villaseñor

Climate Change Activist
Co-founder and co-director for the Youth for Climate Strike
13-year-old Alexandria Villasenor has, every week since December 2018, made a pilgrimage to the United Nations’ headquarters demanding action on climate change. She is one of a cadre of young, fierce and mostly female activists behind the School Strike 4 Climate movement. On March 15, 2019, with the support of some of the world’s biggest environmental groups, tens of thousands of kids in at least two dozen countries and nearly 30 U.S. states plan to skip school to protest.


Haven Coleman

Climate Change Activist
Co-founder and co-director for the Youth for Climate Strike
Haven says, “My parents have always taught me that if there’s a problem, I can fix it. Growing up with parents who supported my ideas I grew up into a lets do it kind of person. I’ve always been vocal about injustices, but climate change has become my focus the past three years. I help groups with furthering their initiatives, by organizing, speaking and showing up. Weekly school strikes though are unlike any other activism I’ve done, connecting me with the world and creating tangible change rapidly. I’m excited to see how this movement connects and engages the youth of America to fight for climate solutions. It’s our future, our lives. Join us!”


Isra Hirsi

Climate Change Activist
Co-founder and co-director for the Youth for Climate Strike
Isra, a student at South High School in Minneapolis, is one of thousands of students around the world planning a massive Youth Climate Strike for March 15. With a few weeks to go, there are already strikes planned for 47 countries and almost all 50 states. Isra is one of three organizers who are bringing the movement — inspired by Swedish activist Greta Thunberg’s weekly climate strikes — to the United States.


Sophie Dickinson

Protest Artist
Concepted an organized art protest
On May 17, 2018 in Australia, an 11-year-old 6th grader created an idea where 5,000 people gathered together to send the message: “climate change – our future is in your hands.” People formed the sign to highlight their frustration at a lack of action by Federal and State governments to reduce carbon emissions and tackle climate change.


Greta Thunberg

Climate change activist
At 15, Greta Thunberg decided to take matters into her own hands: she went on strike and sat on the steps of the parliament building, in Stockholm, every day during school hours for weeks. Her regular actions inspired other kids around the world to start striking for the climate. By 2019, she helped organize the world’s largest climate strike. In over 1000 events worldwide, more than 4 million people showed up around the world. She gave an inspiring talk at a TEDx event and also spoke in Switzerland and Poland.