Greta Thunberg has won the Nordic Council Environment Prize for breathing new life into the debate surrounding the environment and climate at a critical moment in world history. Furthermore, she has inspired millions of people around the world to demand concrete action from our politicians.
The jury said:
The 2019 Nordic Council Environment Prize goes to Greta Thunberg for breathing new life into the debate surrounding the environment and climate at a critical moment in world history. Furthermore, she has inspired millions of people around the world to demand concrete action from our politicians.
Since her first school strike, Greta has not only created a global climate movement, but also challenged our consumption patterns and highlighted the need for political action that reduces the consumption of fossil fuels and resource-intensive goods and services. Through her own personal and concrete guidance, Greta has made increasing numbers of people aware of the issue in a way that seems to have already started to affect our consumption and travel habits, which is in line with UN sustainable development goal number 12: “Sustainable consumption and production”, which is also the theme of this year’s Nordic Council Environment Prize.
Like none before her, in a very short space of time Greta has succeeded in raising awareness of climate and environmental issues in the Nordic countries and the rest of the world. She has stubbornly and persuasively urged the world to listen to research and act on the basis of facts. Her influence has become so extensive that there is now talk of a global “Greta Thunberg effect”.
Greta is being heard by world leaders and decision-makers, and is engaging children and young people in the Nordic countries, Europe, and many other parts of the world. By urging politicians to not only talk about new green jobs, but also to take the climate and environmental crisis seriously, she is encouraging a more balanced political debate.
When she meets resistance and adults say that there’s no point in doing anything – the race has already been run, she says: “You’re never too small to make a difference.” She has proven that beyond a shadow of a doubt.