Greta Thunberg was born January 3, 2003, in Stockholm, Sweden.
Swedish environmental activist who worked to address the problem of climate change, founding in 2018 a movement known as Fridays for Future (also called School Strike for Climate).
Greta was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome, which is now considered an autism spectrum disorder. It is characterized by abnormalities in social interactions (as in classic autism) but with normal intelligence and language development. People with Asperger syndrome tend to focus deeply on one idea or interest, and Greta’s cause became climate change. She first learned about the issue when she was approximately eight years old, and within a few years she changed her own habits, becoming a vegan and refusing to travel by airplane.
For almost three weeks prior to the Swedish election in September 2018, she missed school to sit outside the country’s parliament with a sign that stated “Skolstrejk för Klimatet” (School Strike for Climate). Although alone for the first day of the strike, she was joined each subsequent day by more and more people, and her story garnered international attention. After the election Thunberg returned to school but continued to skip classes on Fridays to strike, and these days were called Fridays for Future. Her action inspired hundreds of thousands of students around the world to participate in their own “Fridays for Future”.
Strikes were held in such countries as Belgium, Italy, Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Finland, Denmark, France, and the Netherlands.
Thunberg received numerous invitations to speak about climate change. She gave speeches at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, and at the European Parliament as well as in front of the legislatures of Italy, France, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
That month millions of protesters marched in climate strikes in more than 163 countries. While Thunberg was credited with shifting some people’s views and behaviours regarding climate change—her influence was known as “the Greta effect.
In addition to her environmental work, Thunberg was credited with raising awareness about Asperger and inspiring those who had the disorder. While acknowledging that Asperger had hampered her in some ways, she also noted its advantages, at one point tweeting: “I have Aspergers and that means I’m sometimes a bit different from the norm. And—given the right circumstances—being different is a superpower.”
The documentary I Am Greta appeared in 2020.
Although Greta is a teenager and not an adult woman, already at her young age she demonstrated with her corroborating theses, to be one of the most influential girls in the world. In 2021 there would be a need for other girls like her, independent and courageous capable of changing the world in all its aspects for future generations.