Greta Thunberg brushes off mockery from U.S. Treasury chief Mnuchin

Marco Green
January 24, 2020

Mnuchin was asked how climate change - a key theme at this year's WEF -would impact the global economy moving forward. "Who is she? I'm confused", he declared.

U.S. finance chief Steve Mnuchin dismissed the Swede's call for governments and companies to cut back on fossil fuel use.

The 17-year-old - who joined climate campaigners at a protest in the centre of the skiing resort on the final day of the meeting - has called for an immediate end to investment in fossil fuels in several appearances this week.

'Is she the chief economist?

Those remarks earned her a rebuke from US Secretary Steven Mnuchin who told her to "study economics" then 'come back and explain it to us'.

The spat between Mnuchin and Thunberg underlined the tensions over climate change at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, where governments and major firms have come under pressure to act now on global warming. "We are being criticized like that all the time".

"If we were careful we could not do what we do".

'The situation is not being treated like the crisis it is'. "We put ourselves in the spotlight", she added.

On Friday, Thunberg, who has been battling the flu this week, kept her lucidity and apologized for her "low energy" - a term Trump has often used to mock rivals - as she spoke out again in favour of science and facts, and set off on yet another "Fridays for Future" march through snowy Davos streets. At Friday's news conference, Thunberg shared the spotlight with Vanessa Nakate of Uganda, Loukina Tille of Switzerland, Luisa Neubauer of Germany, and Isabelle Axelsson of Sweden.

"We never striked for discourse change", said Neubauer, who this month turned down the offer of a board seat on a subsidiary of German industrial giant Siemens.

He said the reason the United States left the Paris climate agreement - which calls for blocking global warming at well below 2C, and 1.5C if possible - "was not because we don't support the environment (but because) we thought it wasn't a fair and balanced agreement".

The young activists also criticised the media, saying they were focusing too much on climate activists instead of the climate crisis.

Greta Thunberg addressed a press conference on climate change at Davos.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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