Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg reached Europe on Tuesday (December 3) after a 21-day catamaran dash across the Atlantic for a United Nations summit where she will invoke the fury of global youth at politicians’ foot-dragging over climate change.
“We are watching you. The younger generation is watching you,” Thunberg said in a message to politicians after she disembarked from a white catamaran, La Vagabonde, in Portugal.
The prospect of another fiery intervention by the 16-year-old, whose ability to stare down politicians has inspired a global protest movement, electrified younger delegates at the international climate talks underway in neighboring Spain.
Thunberg said she would spend a few days in Lisbon before making her way to Madrid, where the COP25 climate summit is currently underway.
Since staging a solitary protest outside the Swedish parliament more than a year ago, Thunberg has channeled the anger felt by millions of teenagers saddled with the prospect of an escalating climate crisis their parents failed to avert.
In September, she carried her message to a one-day climate summit at the United Nations in New York, furiously telling leaders “you have stolen my dreams,” before sailing back to Europe for the latest round of talks.
Thunberg was due to spend the rest of Tuesday meeting activists in Portugal before departing for Madrid, where the negotiations are being held in a series of hangar-like halls.
Increasingly erratic weather patterns, from wildfires in Australia and California to floods in Europe, have added to the sense of urgency around the two-week summit in Spain.
(Production: Marco Trujillo, Miguel Gutierrez)