Young Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg is expected in New York on Wednesday afternoon after a 15-day Atlantic crossing on board a zero-carbon emission yacht.
“Land! The lights of Long Island and New York City ahead,” the 16-year old tweeted on Wednesday morning as her ship approached the U.S. coastline.
According to a spokesman, the team was scheduled to land close to the World Trade Center at about 2.15 p.m. (8.15 p.m. Belgian time) and give a press conference.
Thunberg, whose school strike last year gave rise to a worldwide movement in defence of the planet’s climate, set out on 14 August with her father on the Malizia II, a zero-carbon emissions racing yacht skippered by Pierre Casiraghi, son of Princess Caroline of Monaco, and Germany’s Boris Herrmann, to attend the world summit on climate organised by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in September in New York.
She refused to travel by plane because of the carbon emissions that type of transport generates. Casiraghi made his boat available for free for her to travel the 3,000 nautical miles (about 5,550 kms) separating Britain and the United States.
Thunberg made headlines at the beginning of the 2018 academic year when, in her last year of secondary school, she decided to skip classes every Friday and camp outside the Swedish Parliament in Stockholm to raise legislators’ awareness of the climate emergency facing the world.
Her action, quickly relayed by social networks and the media, inspired thousands of young people worldwide and gave rise to the “Fridays for future” movement.
Before the UN Summit, scheduled for 23 September, the Swedish teenager, who has taken a sabbatical year, will take part in various meetings on climate. She also plans to travel to Canada, Mexico and Chili for another UN conference in December.