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Don’t take selfies with us, act on climate – Greta Thunberg in Rome

Swedish teenage environmental activist, Greta Thunberg, on Thursday made a fresh appeal for action against climate change, blaming older generations for the crisis.

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“You lied to us, you gave us false hopes, you told us that the future was something to look forward to,’’ she said in a speech at the Italian Senate.

She said the world faced a “point of no return’’ around the year 2030 if carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are not dramatically reduced, to the tune of “no less than 50 per cent.’’

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Thunberg, who has become a global icon for climate campaigners, said she found it “very strange’’ that “important people’’ she meets “always congratulate me.’’

“In spite of my activism, the emissions are still rising, and to be honest, there is no change whatsoever in sight, so why would they congratulate me,’’ she complained.

Thunberg has inspired the global “Fridays for Future’’ protests, in which students skip their Friday classes and take to the street to push politicians towards stricter climate policies.

In Rome, the 16-year-old met Pope Francis on Wednesday, and was due lead a Roman “Fridays for Future’’ event on Friday, expected to attract thousands of young people.

“We have not taken to the streets for you to take selfies with us and tell us that you really admire what we do.

“We children are doing this to wake the adults up; we children are doing this to get you to act; we children are doing this because we want our hopes and dreams back,’’ she said. (NAN)