Sixteen-year-old Greta Thunberg is the daughter of Malena Ernman, one of Sweden’s most celebrated opera singers. Ernman wrote a book about the family dealing with Greta’s Asperger’s. But Greta has triumphed in her own way: Her concern about climate change led her to protesting outside the Swedish parliament every Friday, sometimes in ice and snow. At first, her strike was solitary—a lone and sometimes lonely girl (she asked her mother not to join her, as she didn’t want others to think she was influenced by a famous parent). Now she has been applauded at the United Nations, spoken before billionaires at the World Economic Forum, and convinced her mother to give up flying because of airplane emissions. When Greta is striking, people sometimes bring her food. And although she used to eat the same thing every day, she has surprised herself by discovering a new taste for falafel.
Update: Greta has now been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.