LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Student activist Greta Thunberg’s school strike movement marked its first anniversary on Tuesday after a year that has seen the schoolgirl rise from a solitary protester to a leading figure in the fight against climate change.
Here is a timeline on how the “Fridays for Future” school strikes developed into a global movement and some of the controversies it has seen along the way:
August 20, 2018: Swedish student Thunberg, then aged 15, skips school to protest outside parliament for more action against climate change.
August 26, 2018: The student activist is joined by fellow students, teachers and parents at another protest and begins attracting media attention for her climate campaign.
September 2018: Thunberg begins a regular ‘strike’ from classes every Friday to protest climate issues. She invites other students to join her weekly “Fridays for Future” campaign by staging walkouts at their own schools.
November 2018: More than 17,000 students in 24 countries take part in Friday school strikes. Thunberg begins speaking at high-profile events across Europe including United Nations climate talks in Poland.
February 2019: Protests directly inspired by Thunberg take place across more than 30 countries, from Sweden to Brazil, India and the United States.
March 2019: Thunberg is nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize. The number of students taking part in school strikes hits more than 2 million people across 135 countries.
May 2019: Thunberg is named one of the world’s most influential people by Time magazine, appearing on its cover. “Now I am speaking to the whole world,” she wrote on Twitter.
July 2019: Conservative and far-right lawmakers urge a boycott of Thunberg’s appearance in French parliament, mocking her as a “guru of the apocalypse” and a “Nobel prize of fear”.
August 1, 2019: Thunberg hits back at “hate and conspiracy campaigns” after she was described as a “deeply disturbed messiah” leading a “cult” in an opinion column by conservative Australian commentator Andrew Bolt.
August 5, 2019: Some 450 young “Fridays for Future” climate activists from 37 European countries gather for a summit in Lausanne, Switzerland to discuss the movement’s development and work on international cooperation.
August 14, 2019: Thunberg sets sail from Britain for the United States to take part in a United Nations climate summit. Meanwhile, the total number of climate strikers reaches 3.6 million people across 169 countries.
Reporting by Liam Gould; Editing by Belinda Goldsmith; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's and LGBT+ rights, human trafficking, property rights, and climate change. Visit news.trust.org
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