In 2019, there is not an issue more pressing than climate change. With new studies being released say that parts of the world will be underwater by 2050, the pressure to take action against rising sea levels and carbon emissions is overwhelming and scary. The response from the public has been astonishing with over 6 million people taking part in the Climate Strike in September, many aspects of which were led by Greta Thunberg.
Greta Thunberg is a 16-year-old, Swedish, environmentalist who is known for her large participation in activism against the climate crisis. In March 2019, her debut novel was published titled ‘No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference’, made up of speeches that Greta has made at different climate events.
The book itself contains very important revelations regarding Greta’s stance on the climate crisis, coming from a young person living in today’s society. A lot of the speeches focus on her age and the idea that this is going to affect her generation, and people’s children’s generation. It has received a lot of hate for being repetitive and by people who do not agree, or are not concerned with, the rise of global warming. When reading this book, I could see where the repetition argument came from, parts of speeches are often rewritten into other speeches and a lot of Greta’s points come up again and again as the novel goes on- however I do not think this is a negative aspect. In politics there is a lot of repetition, and it is often politicians who Greta is really addressing here. She must repeat her points because they do not seem to be getting across and nothing is being done about them. Her stating them multiple times does not make any of the astonishing points less true.
Thunberg does not hold back in her address of the facts. She says “I don’t want you to be hopeful. I want you to panic… I want you to act as if our house is on fire. Because it is.” She shows the crisis for what it truly is- a crisis. A lot of the speeches can be scary to read because they impose reality upon the reader, everything Greta Thunberg speaks about is real and it is going to happen unless we change. It can be difficult, at times, to read these words because it holds us all accountable for the decline of the planet. No one wants to be told they are to blame, but we are all to blame and this book makes you want to do something about it.
Greta Thunberg is so inspiring for many people because she is so young. She is the most well-known climate change activist in the modern world, which brings with it a lot of pressure. Her speeches in this book do not show her giving in to any kind of pressure. She makes her points, provides facts and plays on people’s emotions in order to get them involved and interested, because we are all already involved, the planet belongs to us all, so it is time we all become interested.
Other books about how you can help the climate crisis:
‘This Is Not A Drill: An Extinction Rebellion Handbook’ by Extinction Rebellion
This book provides instructions on rebellion, and emphasises the need for economic disruption
‘The Uninhabitable Earth: A Story of the Future’ by David Wallace-Wells
Wallace-Wells provides staggering facts and encourages the reader to take responsibility for their part in the climate crisis
‘This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate’ by Naomi Klein
Naomi Klein provides an argument for the links between capitalism and climate change and how deny reality will be life destroying
‘There is No Planet B: A Handbook for the Make or Break Years’ by Mike Berners-Lee
A slightly more light-hearted take on how the individual at home can do little bits to help the planet
‘No One is Too Small to Make a Difference’ and all other mentioned novels are available now in all good bookshops.