Greta Thunberg on her arrival at the Chancellery in Berlin, August 20, 2020 - Odd ANDERSEN / AFP

Swedish activist and figure in the climate movement Greta Thunberg began a meeting with Angela Merkel in Berlin on Thursday, after denouncing "political inaction" and "denial" of states in the face of climate change.

The German Chancellor, whose country holds the presidency of the European Union, receives the young activist at the same time as she passes the milestone of two years of mobilization for the climate.

"Investments in fossil fuels must stop"

It is Greta Thunberg and the other members of her movement who accompany her to the chancellery, Luisa Neubauer (Germany), as well as Anuna de Wever and Adélaïde Charlier (Belgium), who requested this meeting, according to the chancellor. Angela Merkel said she was "happy" to welcome them.

"The EU must finally act, Germany must take the initiative: investments in fossil fuels must stop, ecocide must become a punishable offense", asks Greta Thunberg in an open letter signed by several climate activists.

“When it comes to taking action, we are always in a state of denial. The climate and ecological crisis has never been treated as a crisis, ”deplore these activists in this letter, published by the British daily The Guardian and the German weekly Der Spiegel .

"Europe has the responsibility to act"

"We will tell Ms. Merkel that she must face up to the climate emergency, especially since Germany now holds the presidency of the Council of the European Union", they add, convinced that "Europe has the responsibility to act ”.

This meeting comes two years to the day after the start of the mobilization of the young Swede, who, then aged 15, demonstrated every day in front of the Swedish parliament. Its mobilization has since spread to many countries, with the weekly “Fridays for future” events.

"The gap between what we should be doing and what is actually being done is widening by the minute"

Despite these mobilizations, "we have still lost two crucial years due to political inaction," the activists lament, calling on countries to urgently stop all investments in fossil fuels.

"The gap between what we should be doing and what is actually being done is widening by the minute."

Germany remains heavily dependent on coal due to its gradual abandonment of nuclear power after the Fukushima disaster in 2011. The country could however achieve, thanks to the decline in activity linked to the coronavirus, its target of reducing by 40% compared to at the level of the 90s its emissions.

Germany is aiming to abandon its coal-fired electricity production by 2038, a date deemed too late by climate activists.


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