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Topline: Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg has found a quarantine-compliant way to continue leading young people in climate activism. The 17-year-old activist has announced a new initiative: a series of weekly webinars titled “Talks For Future.” 

  • The digital events will start from Friday, March 27, at 2 p.m. GMT (10 a.m. EST) and will feature climate experts such as scientists, activists and journalists to carry on the spirit of the climate strikes online.
  • Activist and author Naomi Klein is among the first speakers to appear on the webinar on Friday, along with Diarmid Campbell-Lendrum, climate change and health leader for the World Health Organization (WHO).

  • Despite schools closing down across much of the world, young activists like Thunberg have still been showing up for digital climate strikes on social media every Friday, posting pictures of themselves holding up signs demanding action to protect the environment.

Key quote: “Excited to participate in the first #TalksForFuture tomorrow, a plan hatched by @GretaThunberg and other young climate strikers who are unable to engage in their usual Friday demonstrations,” Naomi Klein tweeted on Thursday in support of the initiative.

Tangent: Thunberg told her millions of social media followers on Thursday she had been self-isolating with her mother and sister for the past two weeks after returning home from a three-week trip in Central Europe. She said she reported symptoms associated with coronavirus, such as a fever and a cough. While she could not get tested for COVID-19 since Sweden is limiting tests to those in need of emergency medical treatment, she said it was “extremely likely” that she’s had it, given the combined symptoms and circumstances. She added she has since recovered and she called on other young people to act responsibly as not to infect vulnerable people, staying at home and following expert medical advice. 

Key Background: Since her first solitary school strike in Stockholm, Sweden, in August 2018, Thunberg has inspired millions of people in joining school climate strikes known as “FridaysForFuture.” The activist, who chooses not to fly for her travels, has addressed several high-profile events such as the United Nations General Assembly, the World Economic Forum in Davos, and more recently the European Parliament’s climate committee to demand leaders take firm and urgent action to address climate change.





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