Greta Thunberg will sail across Atlantic in zero-emissions yacht to attend UN summit


Sixteen-year-old Greta Thunberg has not let her refusal to use air travel stop her from taking her message of climate action across the world.

Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg isn't going to let her refusal to fly stop her from attending UN climate conferences in the US and Chile.

The 16-year-old announced on Tuesday that she had been offered a free lift on the high-speed, 18-metre Malizia II yacht - which is entirely emission-free - from the UK to New York in August.

The journey is expected to take approximately two weeks, with departure and arrival dates dependent on weather conditions. 

"I’ll be joining the UN Climate Action Summit in New York, COP25 in Santiago and other events along the way," she tweeted.

"Together with many other young people across the Americas and the world, I will be there, even if the journey will be long and challenging."

Greta has previously said she does not fly due to the climate impact of aviation, a position that poses a significant challenge to her international activism work.

The 16-year-old is currently taking a year off school to attend climate conferences throughout the Americas.

Team Malizia of Yacht Club De Monaco said they were "honoured" to be able to sail the teenager from Europe to the US. 

A sleeping bunk inside the Malizia II.
A sleeping bunk inside the Malizia II.

The Malizia II was first launched in 2015 and features solar panels and underwater turbines that generate electricity.

Greta's journey will reportedly be captained by Boris Herrmann, a professional race skipper, and founder of the Maliza team Pierre Casiraghi.

Greta shot to prominence after she kicked off the global school strikes for climate action movement by forgoing school to protest outside the Swedish parliament

Since then, the teenager has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize and is a respected voice in the climate action movement.

Greta Thunberg with her father Svante and German skipper Boris Herrmann in Paris, France.
Greta Thunberg with her father Svante and German skipper Boris Herrmann in Paris, France.
Team Malizia

The UN Climate Action Summit, scheduled for 23 September, will aim to accelerate actions to implement the Paris Agreement on Climate Change across the globe. 

Leaders have been encouraged by UN Secretary-General António Guterres to attend the summit with "concrete, realistic plans" to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.

"The science is clear. We must start bending the emissions curve steeply downwards no later than 2020, if we still are to have a chance of staying below a 1.5 degrees of global temperature rise," Greta said in a Facebook post on Tuesday.

"We still have a window of time when things are in our own hands. But that window is closing fast."

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