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Greta Thunberg, 16-year-old climate activist, tells Congress to listen to the scientists and take real action

CNN logo CNN 9/18/2019 By Leah Asmelash, CNN

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Greta Thunberg has had a busy week.

On Wednesday, the Swedish 16-year-old climate activist appeared in front of Congress before a hearing on climate change, just days after she met with former President Barack Obama.

Thunberg, though, told Congress she didn't have any prepared remarks. Instead, she said she was attaching her testimony -- the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's special report on global warming, which reported a temperature increase of 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

"I am submitting this report as my testimony because I don't want you to listen to me, I want you to listen to the scientists," she said. "And I want you to unite behind the science. And then I want you to take real action."

Strong words from the teenager, but this isn't the first time she's spoken up to governments. 

Slideshow by USA Today

Thunberg first made a name for herself while staging weekly sit-ins outside the Swedish Parliament, which led to over 100 similar protests worldwide.

Thunberg is in the US to speak at the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York on September 23, but she's had other things on her agenda, too -- including appearing on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah in New York and receiving Amnesty International's top award in Washington for her activism.

But she didn't travel to the US by plane. To cut down on emissions, Thunberg spent two weeks sailing across the Atlantic on a zero-emissions sailboat.

That's dedication.

a group of people posing for the camera: Greta Thunberg spoke before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Europe, Eurasia, Energy and the Environment Subcommittee, and the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. © ALASTAIR PIKE/AFP/Getty Images Greta Thunberg spoke before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Europe, Eurasia, Energy and the Environment Subcommittee, and the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis.
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