Written by Leney Ang

What happened?

17 year old Greta Thunberg was posed as the headliner to the Davos summit this year. Thunberg continues to advocate for stronger action to prevent the 1.5°C of warming that we will soon face

On 24 January, Greta Thunberg made a speech deeply critical of world leaders and businesses at one of the world’s most elite conferences – The World Economic Forum,  more popularly known as Davos. In her speech, she listed various demands, the most prominent being a call for an immediate end to all fossil fuel investment, exploration, and usage. This demand has been met with significant backlash. The most vocal criticism came from  US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin who took aim at Thunberg, telling the 17 year old to study economics before making these demands (which he claimed later was a joke).

This is Thunberg’s second time at Davos. During her first in 2019, she made an impassioned speech, most famous for the line “Our House is on Fire”. She urged world leaders, the adults, to take action to prevent the 1.5°C of warming, which would have devastating environmental consequences.

Since the 2019 Davos Summit, Thunberg remarks how she is now “heard all the time”  but not enough for concrete, significant actions to be taken.



The Davos Summit 2020 closed with talks for a better capitalism and an environmentally sustainable business model, which came with disagreements. Mnuchin, who was against adopting policies to tackle climate change, went up against those who called for swift action to adopt an environmentally sustainable business modelPrince Charles and Christine Lagarde, the president of the European Central Bank.

As world leaders continue to debate their disagreements and concerns, we see Thunberg continuing her advance. Having joined a climate march later in the day, after having denounced world leaders earlier.

The world watches on, as this 17-year-old climate activist from Sweden continues her fight for the planet, some have taken to calling her the emblem of a generation.

(Picture Credits: World Economic Forum)

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