Greta Thunberg joins Forbes World’s Most Powerful Women 2019 list

She is not an elected politician, like German Chancellor Angela Merkel. She is not a CEO or founder of a company, like Susan and Anne Wojcicki (of YouTube and 23andMe, respectively). Nor is she a rich-list member like Oprah Winfrey on the Forbes 400 or superstar Taylor Swift.


What Greta is: Influential in a way that people three or four times her age are not.


Now 16, she started making headlines in Sweden, her home country, when, in August 2018, she began boycotting school on Fridays to go to the door of Parliament and hold a sign reading “skolstrejk för klimatet ”, or “school strike for the climate”. Later, she drew international attention with her speech at a UN climate change conference.


“You say you love your children above all else, and yet you are robbing them of their future right in front of your very eyes,” he said. ” We came here to let you know that change is coming, whether you like it or not. The real power belongs to the people.”Power, in particular, belongs to young people, so many of them have engaged with Greta’s words. On September 20, 2019, students around the world staged the largest climate change protest in history, with an estimated 4 million people participating in 2,500 events in over 160 countries on all seven continents. And after avoiding air travel because of its effects on the environment, in Europe, Greta switched to the train and, to cross the Atlantic Ocean in the fall, the ship. Aviation experts began to cite “the Greta effect” when trying to explain the slight decline in airline passengers.


Each year, FORBES’ list of the 100 Most Powerful Women in the World prioritizes names that have a good revenue stream, a gross domestic product, or assets under management. The methodology considers the population headed by a woman or the total number of global employees. Greta has none of those things, but she has her voice. And that voice helped her master the third and final piece of our methodology: media mentions. This year, Greta has been the subject of more press reports than anyone else, with the exception of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Greta’s power is so effective that she was a 2019 finalist for the Nobel Peace Prize, one of the youngest nominees for the honor. It is for this reason that she earned number 100 on the 2019 list of the Most Powerful Women in the World. Power is in the eye of the beholder, and there are plenty of people who will argue that she deserves a different status; some will say higher, others will certainly say lower. What is clear is this: she alone cannot reverse the damage humans have done to Earth, but her determination and strong rhetoric are impossible to ignore.



“People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing,” she said during her speech at the United Nations (UN) in September. “We are at the beginning of a mass extinction, and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales about eternal economic growth. How dare you?”.