Greta Thunberg inspires climate 'school strike' in 98 countries around the world


Young climate change warrior has inspired a school walk out and march in Hong Kong

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Greta Thunberg has inspired a global following and "school strike for climate" events around the world.

Students around the world are expected to skip school on Friday to demonstrate against climate change, taking their cue from Swedish schoolgirl Greta Thunberg whose weekly “school strike for climate” has won a global following.

Greta, then 15, began riding her bicycle to Sweden’s parliament last August, taking up a place on the cobblestones in front of Stockholm’s Parliament House with her “school strike for climate” hand-painted sign.

Thousands of students around the world have since copied her, and youth organisations are calling for an unprecedented strike tomorrow in which students in 98 countries are expected to participate.

HK students to join March 15 global climate strike inspired by Greta Thunberg's #FridaysForFuture movement

“I think this movement is very important. It not only makes people aware, and makes people talk about it more, but also to show the people in power that this is the most important thing there is,” Greta said in an interview.

Greta has almost 250,000 followers on Twitter where her movement carries the hashtags #FridaysForFuture and #SchoolStrike4Climate.

A TEDx talk she delivered on climate change now carried on TED’s main website has garnered more than 1.2 million views and last month Greta joined protests in Belgium, where she won a European Union pledge to spend billions of euros to combat climate change.

“I think the most fun thing is to watch all the pictures around the world of hundreds of thousands of children school striking for the climate,” Greta said.

Greta said she wants Sweden to adhere to the Paris Agreement, part of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

HK teens inspired by environmental activist Greta Thunberg urge fellow students to join their school strike for climate action

“I’ve said that I will continue to strike every Friday until Sweden is in line with the Paris Agreement,” she said. “That may take a couple of years and I’ll just have to try to be patient.”

On Friday, students in Hong Kong will walk out of class and march to Central Government Offices to urge the government to take action against climate change. Students participating in the class boycott will gather at Chater Garden in Central, after police objected to their original plan of gathering at Victoria Park.

They will set off at 11am. Stay tuned to our Facebook page for live updates, and check out our interview with Greta on the cover of Friday’s Young Post.

Edited by Ginny Wong