PILTON, Somerset, England — Greta Thunberg doesn’t have enough time in the world for cavalier politicians.
The Swedish climate activist, 19, took to the Pyramid Stage at England’s Glastonbury Festival Saturday to admonish those running the world — and running it into the ground, according to her speech.
“The delicately balanced natural patterns and cycles that are a vital part of the systems that sustain life on earth as we know it are being disrupted,” Thunberg said, earning cheers. “The consequences could be catastrophic. And no, unfortunately, this is not the new normal. This crisis will continue to get worse until we manage to halt the constant destruction of our life-supporting systems, until we prioritize people over profit and greed.”
She went on to dismiss what she seems to be the lip service paid to the citizens of the world by its rulers.
“People in power do not need to wait for anyone else in order to start acting. Nor do they need conferences, treaties, international agreement to take real climate action. They could start right away,” said Thunberg. ”And yet they actively choose not to. … Throughout history, we have been adept at keeping historic atrocities as far away from us as possible. It has always been someone else in some far away place. But the climate crisis was created by us, the nations of the global north. It is a crisis of inequality that dates back to colonialism and beyond. Those who have done the absolute least to cause it are the ones who will suffer the most. All this is ultimately a symptom of a much larger crisis: the crisis arising from the idea that some people are worth more than others and therefore have the right to exploit and steal other people’s land and resources, as well as the right to use up the planet’s finite resources at an infinitely higher rate than others.”
On the “Worthy Causes” section of the festival’s website, it notes: “This year, Oxfam, Greenpeace and WaterAid are joining forces to fight climate change and uplift the communities most affected by it.”
Glastonbury would have celebrated its 50th year in 2020 were it not for the coronavirus pandemic, because of which this is the first incarnation of the festival since 2019.
Thunberg isn’t the only famous face reminding this year’s Glasto audiences of the sociopolitical stakes.
Both Billie Eilish, the fest’s youngest-ever headliner, and Phoebe Bridgers on Friday called out the Supreme Court for overturning Roe v. Wade just hours prior, and with it the federal right to abortion.