Published: Tue, January 21, 2020
Sci-tech | By Patricia Wade

Greta Thunberg: we have eight years to save the earth

Greta Thunberg: we have eight years to save the earth

Ms Thunberg said: "The fact that the U.S. is leaving the Paris accord seemed to outrage and worry everyone, as it should".

Nobel prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz has slammed U.S. President Donald Trump's speech at the World Economic Forum for misrepresenting the economy and for failing to tackle climate issues.

Gripping each side of the podium as he read from two teleprompters, Trump recited a litany of USA economic statistics that he claimed showed his policies were working.

'Without treating it as a real crisis we can not solve it'.

The Swedish teenager came to fame by staging a regular strike at her school, sparking a global movement that eventually earned her Time Magazine's award as the 2019 Person of the Year. Trump has worked to dismantle environmental regulations since taking office and has denied climate change. The report also finds that just over 2,000 billionaires have more combined wealth than 4.6 billion people.

"He [Xi Jinping] is for China, I am for the USA - other than that, we love each other", he said, gathering laughter from the audience.

"The older generation has a lot of experience, but we have ideas, we have energy, and we have solutions", said Natasha Wang Mwansa, an 18-year-old activist from Zambia who campaigns for girls' and women's rights.

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Salvador Gómez-Colón, who raised funds and awareness after Hurricane María devastated his native Puerto Rico in 2017, said young activists are doing more than just talking.

"There's 400 gigatons now, in the 3 trillion trees, and if you were to scale that up by another trillion trees that's in the order of hundreds of gigatons captured from the atmosphere-at least 10 years of anthropogenic emissions completely wiped out", Crowther said.

"As a result, it is necessary to move beyond short-term technological or economic approaches and to give full consideration to the ethical dimension in seeking resolutions to present problems or proposing initiatives for the future".

"But let's be clear - a big part of this is because we failed for a very long time and governments continue to fail", he added.

It's wonderful when young people get involved.

The pontiff praised the World Economic Forum, saying it has "provided an arena where political will and mutual cooperation can be guided and strengthened in overcoming the isolationism, individualism and ideological colonization that sadly characterizes too much contemporary debate". "I want the cleanest water and the cleanest air", he added. I want you to feel the fear I feel every day.

The forum's own Global Risks report published last week warned that "climate change is striking harder and more rapidly than many expected" with global temperatures on track to increase by at least three degrees Celsius (5.4 degrees Fahrenheit) towards the end of the century.

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