Thousands of climate strikes planned on Friday, inspired by Sweden’s Greta Thunberg

Climate protests inspired by Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg are planned in more than 2,000 locations on Friday afternoon.

Thousands of climate strikes planned on Friday, inspired by Sweden's Greta Thunberg
Greta Thunberg leads French students in a climate march in Paris. Photo:AP Photo/Francois Mori/TT

Swedish and German media have been calling the mass engagement on climate issues “the Greta Thunberg effect” after the 16-year-old who began to strike from school last August.

Since the start of the autumn term, she has spent each Friday outside the Swedish parliament in Stockholm, and ever since the first few days she has been joined by other students, teachers and those concerned about the climate.

READ ALSO: 'I want you to panic': Swedish teen raises climate alarm at Davos

Thunberg has inspired thousands of other students to strike from school in countries including the UK, Germany, and Australia.

And Friday's events were planned in almost two thirds of the world's countries, according to Thunberg, who said on Twitter: “The latest update says 2,052 locations in 123 countries on every continent, including Antarctica.”

In Sweden alone, protests were planned in 114 towns and cities.

This week the Swedish teenager was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by Norwegian lawmakers.

READ ALSO: The Local's interview with Greta Thunberg

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Sweden to set world’s first consumption-based emissions target

Sweden political parties have unanimously backed the world's first consumption-based emissions target, with the country aiming to hit net zero by 2045.

Sweden to set world's first consumption-based emissions target

The committee responsible for setting Sweden’s environmental goals on Thursday presented its proposals for what goals Sweden should set for greenhouse has emissions linked to the country’s consumption. 

“No other country in the world has done what we have done,” Emma Nohrén, chair of the climate goals committee, said at a press conference announcing the goals. “There has been a pioneering sprit.” 

About 60 percent of the emissions caused by people living in Sweden are released in other countries producing goods to be consumed in Sweden, meaning Sweden’s production-based emissions goals, like those of other countries, arguably misrepresent Sweden’s impact.  

In a press statement, the government said that as well as the 2045 consumption emissions target, the committee has suggested setting targets for the climate impact of its exports, include emissions from flights and cargo ships in its long-term national climate goals, and aim to include emissions from internal flights in its target for domestic transport by 2030.  

The committee also proposes that emissions from goods and services ordered by the public sector should decline at a faster rate than those of the rest of the country. 

Amanda Palmstierna, an MP for the Green Party who sits on the committee, said it was positive that the new goals had the backing of all seven of Sweden’s parliamentary parties. 

“It’s important that all the parties are backing this proposal so that it can become implemented,” she said. “Significant action is required now. We have so little time, as we saw in the IPCC report which came out on Monday.”