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Greta Thunberg suggests 'those in power have given up' on climate goals

Swedish teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg says that it seems that those in power "have given up" on the 2015 landmark Paris climate deal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius since pre-industrial times.

Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg. Source: Getty

"By judging the debate and the meeting, those in power have given up the 1.5 degree goal and we will not accept that. We, the younger generation," Thunberg said after a virtual meeting with Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven.

She and three other teenagers from her movement, the Fridays for Future movement, spoke with Lofven ahead of this year's United Nations global climate summit due to take place in Glasgow, Scotland, in November.

The Paris deal asks both rich and poor countries to take action to curb the rise in global temperatures that is melting glaciers, raising sea levels and shifting rainfall patterns.

By November, the UN climate negotiating process calls for 200 nations to ratchet up commitments to cut emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases by 2030.

The rich countries need to come up with more money to help the poor countries develop greener power and adapt to climate change's harsh realities.

And nations need to agree on a price on carbon pollution after several years of gridlock. They must figure out essentially how to make it all work.

"I think compromises will be needed," Thunberg told a virtual press conference. "Of course, not everything is black and white, but we must also remember that we can't compromise the laws of physics."

Thunberg, 18, has encouraged students to skip school to join protests demanding faster action on climate change, a movement that has spread beyond Sweden to other European nations and around the world.

"We don't enjoy being the bad guys having to tell the uncomfortable stuff," Thunberg said in English.

"So, we don't do this because we think it's fun. We don't enjoy being the party poopers, so to say," and urged others to "dare to speak up" and "risk losing a bit of popularity".