Swedish teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg has hit back at a US official after he tried to belittle her voice against the climate crisis. Speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2020 in Davos, Switzerland, Thunberg had called for an immediate end to fossil fuel subsidies and completely divest from fossil fuels.
“We don't want these things done by 2050, or 2030, or even 2021, we want this done now," said Thunberg.
US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin reportedly dismissed her concerns at a news conference in Davos saying, "Is she the chief economist? Who is she? I’m confused." Mnuchin went on to suggest that Thunberg should explain the issue after she goes and studies economics in college.
Thunberg, posting a clip of a graph about emissions, said that it doesn’t take a college degree in economics to realise that our remaining 1.5 degrees carbon budget and ongoing fossil fuel subsidies and investments don’t add up.
My gap year ends in August, but it doesn’t take a college degree in economics to realise that our remaining 1,5° carbon budget and ongoing fossil fuel subsidies and investments don’t add up. 1/3 pic.twitter.com/1virpuOyYG— Greta Thunberg (@GretaThunberg) January 23, 2020
So either you tell us how to achieve this mitigation or explain to future generations and those already affected by the climate emergency why we should abandon our climate commitments. 2/3— Greta Thunberg (@GretaThunberg) January 23, 2020
Thunberg, a 17-year-old student from Stockholm, has been holding climate strikes across the globe to raise awareness and force world leaders to take concrete steps against climate change. She has been raising voice from international platforms to cut carbon emissions but the Trump administration has not been fond of the teenage activist.
US President Donald Trump had rejected warnings by climate activists and called them 'prophets of doom' in the keynote speech. Later, Trump announced that the United States will join the 'One Trillion Trees' initiative but Thunberg, in an apparent jibe at the US President, said that 'planting trees is not enough'.
"Planting trees is good of course, but it's nowhere near enough of what is needed and it cannot replace real mitigation...My generation will not give up without a fight...Our house is still on fire,” she said.