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Image / Editorial

‘It is time to rebel’: Greta Thunberg features on new 1975 song about climate change


by Erin Lindsay
25th Jul 2019
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Climate change activist Greta Thunberg is calling fans of The 1975 to action


16-year-old climate change activist Greta Thunberg has made her musical debut on a new track by The 1975.

The song, recorded in June in Stockholm, is the first track from the band’s upcoming fourth album Notes On a Conditional Form, set to be released next February.

The song features a lengthy speech by Thunberg set to an orchestral backing track, in which she reiterates many of her famous stances from previous speeches, and calls on every listener to make an immediate change in how they deal with climate change.

Thunberg says: “Solving the climate crisis is the greatest and most complex challenge that homo sapiens have ever faced. The main solution, however, is so simple that even a small child can understand it. We have to stop our emissions of greenhouse gases. And either we do that, or we don’t.

You say that nothing in life is black or white. But that is a lie. A very dangerous lie,” she continues. “Either we prevent a 1.5 degree of warming, or we don’t. Either we avoid setting off that irreversible chain reaction beyond human control, or we don’t. Either we choose to go on as a civilisation or we don’t. That is as black or white as it gets. Because there are no grey areas when it comes to survival.”

Related: ‘Biggest compliment yet’: Greta Thunberg responds to criticism from oil industry

Temperatures in London are expected to reach 37 degrees today, making it an appropriate time to release a climate change track.

All proceeds from the track will go towards Extinction Rebellion, a protest group that uses “civil disobedience and nonviolent resistance” to fight against climate change. Matt Healy, lead singer of The 1975, said that meeting Thunberg was “such an inspiration”.

The track release follows Thunberg’s address to French politicians earlier this week, where she urged them to “unite behind the science” of the climate emergency. She and other climate activists will lead a worldwide climate strike, where she invites families to take to the streets in protest against climate inaction.

Read Thunberg’s full monologue from The 1975’s new song here:

We are right now in the beginning of a climate and ecological crisis.

And we need to call it what it is. An emergency.

We must acknowledge that we do not have the situation under control and that we don’t have all the solutions yet. Unless those solutions mean that we simply stop doing certain things.

We admit that we are losing this battle.

We have to acknowledge that the older generations have failed. All political movements in their present form have failed.

But homo sapiens have not yet failed.

Yes, we are failing, but there is still time to turn everything around. We can still fix this. We still have everything in our own hands.

But unless we recognise the overall failures of our current systems, we most probably don’t stand a chance.

We are facing a disaster of unspoken sufferings for enormous amounts of people. And now is not the time for speaking politely or focusing on what we can or cannot say. Now is the time to speak clearly.

Solving the climate crisis is the greatest and most complex challenge that homo sapiens have ever faced. The main solution, however, is so simple that even a small child can understand it. We have to stop our emissions of greenhouse gases.

And either we do that, or we don’t.

You say that nothing in life is black or white.

But that is a lie. A very dangerous lie.

Either we prevent a 1.5 degree of warming, or we don’t.

Either we avoid setting off that irreversible chain reaction beyond human control, or we don’t.

Either we choose to go on as a civilisation or we don’t.

That is as black or white as it gets.

Because there are no grey areas when it comes to survival.

Now we all have a choice.

We can create transformational action that will safeguard the living conditions for future generations.

Or we can continue with our business as usual and fail.

That is up to you and me.

And yes, we need a system change rather than individual change. But you cannot have one without the other.

If you look through history, all the big changes in society have been started by people at the grassroots level. People like you and me.

So, I ask you to please wake up and make the changes required possible. To do your best is no longer good enough. We must all do the seemingly impossible.

Today, we use about 100 million barrels of oil every single day. There are no politics to change that. There are no rules to keep that oil in the ground.

So, we can no longer save the world by playing by the rules. Because the rules have to be changed.

Everything needs to change. And it has to start today.

So, everyone out there, it is now time for civil disobedience. It is time to rebel.


Featured image via Twitter


  • Read more: ‘Thank you’: David Attenborough praises plastic ban at Glastonbury
  • Read more: 10 easy switches you can make to live a more sustainable life
  • Read more: I thought I couldn’t afford sustainable fashion but I was proven wrong

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