Davos 2019: Swedish teen activist sleeps in tent in –18C temperatures

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Davos 2019: Swedish teen activist sleeps in tent in –18C temperatures
Greta Thunberg in Davos on Wednesday. Photo: AFP

Sixteen-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg camped out in a tent in the Swiss city of Davos on Thursday night in temperatures well below freezing as she prepared to take her message to the world’s business and political elites.


Thunberg, who arrived in the Alpine city on Wednesday after a 32-hour train ride from Stockholm, tweeted a picture of herself in her sleeping bag on Wednesday evening in which she could be seen wearing a scarf and a woollen cap. 

“Goodnight from Davos. -15 and we’re sleeping in tents at the @ArcticBasecamp;” tweeted the teen, referring to the camp set up by a team of arctic scientists in Davos this week to help draw the attention of world leaders to the risks associated with climate change. 

On Friday morning, she tweeted again after she learned the temperature had actually plunged to a staggeringly cold -18C overnight.

The image of Thunberg in her tent is in stark contrast to the general atmosphere of luxury during the annual World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos where hotel rooms can cost thousands of dollars, and where private jets – not trains – are the usual form of arrival.

“I didn’t know what I expected but it is a very, very weird place at this time because there are black cars everywhere and people walking around in suits. I am not used to that,” Thunberg said in an interview on Wednesday night

“It seems like it’s very closed. There is only one kind of people here,” she added. 

She also noted she was “a bit worried” about the cold, given she would be camping.

Thunberg first made headlines with her weekly "school strikes for the climate" in front of the Swedish parliament, which began last August. 

A speech she gave to world leaders at last month's UN climate talks in Poland has inspired school students around the world to stage similar protests in favour of the environment - including in Switzerland.


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