A 16-year-old tells Davos delegates that if the planet dies, she’s blaming them

Greta Thunberg, the Swedish teenager who called the world to attention last month at the 2018 UN Climate Change Conference, brought her stark message to the World Economic Forum this week, telling the global elites who converged on Davos, Switzerland, that she would hold them accountable for not doing more to stop an unfolding environmental catastrophe.

At a packed luncheon sponsored by Salesforce on Thursday (Jan. 24), invited guests heard from a panel that included the primatologist Jane Goodall and musicians Bono and Will.i.am. But it was Thunberg, seated at a table near the front, who got the last word. Salesforce founder and co-CEO Marc Benioff had come down from the stage and offered her the microphone to give the delegates a young person’s view. She did not mince words.

“We are facing [an] existential crisis, the biggest crisis humanity has ever faced,” the 16-year-old said. “If everyone is guilty, then no one is to blame, and someone is to blame… Some people, some companies, some decision makers in particular know exactly what priceless values they have been sacrificing to continue making unimaginable amounts of money, and I think many of you here today belong to that group of people.”

Thanks for supporting our journalism! You’ve hit your monthly article limit. Become a member to help build the future of Quartz.

Get unlimited access to Quartz on all devices. Unlock member-exclusive coverage, CEO interviews, member-only events, conference calls with our editors, and more.

About the author

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *