In August 2018 the summer break in Sweden ended but Greta Thunberg, unlike her other classmates, did not return to school that first Monday. Instead, she stood in front of the Swedish parliament with a sign she had drawn herself. It read “Skolstrekj för klimatet” – school strike for the climate.
At first, she planned not to go to school until the parliamentary elections in September, as she thought that none of the campaigns and the measures the individual parties wanted to take against climate change were giving the issue the attention it deserved. Greta sat there alone, day after day, and quickly got a lot of attention and eventually sparked protests all over Europe. But does it really have an impact on climate policy? Or are all these young people demonstrating without any prospect of being heard?