Climate change activist Greta Thunberg has been named Time magazine’s Person of the Year for 2019. The now-16-year-old Thunberg rose to prominence in August of 2018 when she began protesting outside the Swedish Parliament with a sign reading “School Strike for Climate.”
Since then, her action has spurred tens of thousands of teens and young adults to strike for climate change around the world. In this regard, Thunberg recently has brought more awareness to the impending climate catastrophe than any other person on the planet. As Time explains:
The politics of climate action are as entrenched and complex as the phenomenon itself, and Thunberg has no magic solution. But she has succeeded in creating a global attitudinal shift, transforming millions of vague, middle-of-the-night anxieties into a worldwide movement calling for urgent change. She has offered a moral clarion call to those who are willing to act, and hurled shame on those who are not. She has persuaded leaders, from mayors to Presidents, to make commitments where they had previously fumbled: after she spoke to Parliament and demonstrated with the British environmental group Extinction Rebellion, the U.K. passed a law requiring that the country eliminate its carbon footprint. She has focused the world’s attention on environmental injustices that young indigenous activists have been protesting for years. Because of her, hundreds of thousands of teenage “Gretas,” from Lebanon to Liberia, have skipped school to lead their peers in climate strikes around the world.
Other Time figures of the year include the U.S. women’s soccer team as Athlete of the Year, public servants as Guardians of the Year, Lizzo as Entertainer of the Year, and Disney CEO Bob Iger as Businessperson of the Year.
— TIME (@TIME) December 11, 2019