Greta Thunberg has said she ‘doesn’t care’ about the jet-setting exploits of celebrities who preach about the environment in an interview ahead of her 18th birthday.
The teenage climate change activist became the face of the youth climate movement after launching a solo ‘school strike’ outside the Swedish parliament aged just 15.
Since then, Miss Thunberg – who will turn 18 on Sunday – has spoken at the United Nations climate summit, been nominated for a Nobel peace prize and was dubbed Time magazine’s 2019 person of the year.
But she said her global superstardom won’t last forever so is trying to ‘use her position’ to get as much done as possible ‘in this limited amount of time’.
Speaking in an interview with The Times, the 17-year-old was asked how she feels about celebrities who travel the world in gas-guzzling planes while preaching about climate change.
She simply replied: ‘I don’t care.’
Greta Thunberg (pictured) has said she ‘doesn’t care’ about the jet-setting exploits of celebrities who preach about the environment in an interview ahead of her 18th birthday
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were criticised for using private jets in 2019 – including four trips in just 11 days in August – despite their eco credentials.
Miss Thunberg said: ‘I’m not telling anyone else what to do, but there is a risk when you are vocal about these things and don’t practise as you preach, then you will become criticised for that and what you are saying won’t be taken seriously.’
The teenager – who has Asperger’s syndrome – was also critical of Boris Johnson’s ten-point ‘green industrial revolution’.
The Prime Minister launched a £12billion plan for the environment on Wednesday, saying it could create 250,000 jobs and significantly slash the country’s carbon emissions.
Among the ambitious proposals are plans to ban new sales of petrol and diesel cars by 2030, install thousands of offshore wind turbines and plant 75,000 acres of trees per year.
Miss Thunberg – who will turn 18 on Sunday – has spoken at the United Nations climate summit, been nominated for a Nobel peace prize and was dubbed Time magazine’s 2019 person of the year (pictured)
But Miss Thunberg (pictured) said her global superstardom won’t last forever so she is trying to ‘use her position’ to get as much done as possible ‘in this limited amount of time’
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle (pictured) were criticised for using private jets in 2019 – including four trips in just 11 days in August – despite their eco credentials
Miss Thunberg said that while the proposals were considered better than the Government doing nothing – she pointed out that scientists have criticised it for not doing enough to tackle climate change.
In the interview, the activist also said that she doesn’t mull over criticism levied at her from world leaders.
In 2019, Miss Thunberg shouted ‘How dare you?’ during the UN General Assembly – claiming that country heads were failing the younger generation.
US President Donald Trump sarcastically said of her UN Speech: ‘She seems like a very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future. So nice to see.’
Last December, President Trump told Miss Thunberg to ‘work on her anger management problem’ and ‘get a good old-fashioned movie with a friend’ after she became the youngest person to be awarded with Time magazine’s Person Of The Year accolade.
After she was named Person Of The Year by Time Magazine, President Trump said Thunberg needed to ‘chill’ and ‘work on her anger management problem’
The teenage activist mocked the president and changed her Twitter bio using his words
The 17-year-old mimicked a tweet the President had directed at her last year and told him to ‘chill’ and ‘work on his anger management problem’
In his tweet last year the President wrote: ‘So ridiculous. Greta must work on her anger management problem, then go to a good old-fashioned movie with a friend! Chill Greta, chill!’
In November, Miss Thunberg threw the criticism back at him.
Taking to Twitter to reply to the President’s calls to ‘stop the count’, the teenager wrote: ‘So ridiculous. Donald must work on his anger management problem, then go to a good old-fashioned movie with a friend! Chill Donald, Chill!’
Last month, the activist said she was celebrating being back in school but accused nations of ignoring climate experts, despite the pandemic showing the importance of following science.
Miss Thunberg took a gap year from 2019 in a bid to force leaders from around the world to take action on climate change.
The schoolgirl was seen at the UN headquarters last year with an enraged expression on her face as President Trump walked in
As her studies get back under way she told novelist Margaret Atwood during her guest editorship of BBC Radio 4’s Today programme the coronavirus crisis has ‘shone a light’ on how ‘we cannot make it without science’.
And she accused the world of listening to ‘one type’ of scientist, and ignoring others warning of climate change.
When asked if the pandemic’s impact on people’s appreciation of science could have an effect on climate information the teenager said: ‘It could definitely have.
‘I think this pandemic has shone a light on how … we are depending on science and that we cannot make it without science.
‘But of course, we are only listening to one type of scientist, or some types of scientists, and, for example, we are not listening to climate scientists, we’re not listening to scientists who work on biodiversity.
‘That of course needs to change.’
Earlier she had shared a picture of herself on a bike with her school rucksack over her shoulder as she celebrated returning to education.
But the environmental campaigner expressed scepticism when questioned about nations’ pledges to reduce their carbon emissions, such as China which has committed to reach a net zero target by 2060.
She said: ‘That would be very nice if they actually meant something.
‘We can’t just keep talking about future, hypothetical, vague, distant dates and pledges. We need to do things now. And also net zero … that is a very big loophole, you can fit a lot in that word net.’
But she praised the election of Joe Biden as US president who has pledged to rejoin the Paris climate accord on the first day of his presidency.
Ms Thurnberg added: ‘It could be a good start of something new.
‘Let’s hope that it is like that, and let’s push for it to become like that.’