News & Opinion | March 14, 2019 12:30 pm

16-Year-Old Swedish Climate Change Activist Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

Hundreds of thousands of students are expected to go on strike Friday at Thunberg's urging.

nobel nomination
Greta Thunberg, the founder of the Youth Strike for Climate movement, is the TIME person of the year. (Daniel Bockwoldt/picture alliance via Getty Images)

Greta Thunberg, the founder of the Youth Strike for Climate movement, has been nominated for the Nobel peace prize.

Thunberg’s nomination comes just one day before hundreds of thousands of young people are expected to walk out of their schools on strike in 1,659 towns and cities in 105 countries to raise Climate Change awareness. The world’s youth were inspired by Thunberg’s solo protest back in August.

“We have proposed Greta Thunberg because if we do nothing to halt climate change it will be the cause of wars, conflict and refugees,” said Norwegian Socialist MP Freddy André Øvstegård. “Greta Thunberg has launched a mass movement which I see as a major contribution to peace.”

National politicians and some university professors can nominate candidates for the Nobel peace prize, which will be awarded in December, The Guardian reported. There are 301 candidates for the 2019 prize: 223 individuals and 78 organizations.

“Honoured and very grateful for this nomination,” Thunberg wrote on Twitter.

“Tomorrow we schoolstrike for our future,” she added in another post. “And we will continue to do so for as long as it takes. Adults are more than welcome to join us. Unite behind the science.”

While some politicians have opposed the school strikes, many have supported them, including Germany’s Angela Merkel and Ireland’s Leo Varadkar. The mayors of Paris, Milan, Sydney, Austin, Philadelphia, Portland, Oslo, Barcelona and Montreal added their backing on Thursday.