Climate activists call on Italy to take swift action against climate change

by Reuters
Monday, 19 October 2020 19:45 GMT

FILE PHOTO: Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg joins Italian students to demand action on climate change, in Piazza del Popolo, Rome, Italy, April 19, 2019. REUTERS/Yara Nardi

Image Caption and Rights Information

Greta Thunberg and fellow members of Fridays for Future met Italian leaders, who said they were taking green steps but worried about job losses

ROME, Oct 19 (Reuters) - A group of European climate activists, including Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg, on Monday urged Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte to take stronger action against climate change.

Italy, the EU's third largest economy, will chair the 2021 G20 and will assume in partnership with Britain the presidency of the United Nations COP26 climate change conference.

"They spoke for a long time but I feel like I didn't hear anything to our fight unfortunately," Italian activist Martina Comparelli told reporters after a virtual meeting with the Italian prime minister and Environment Minister Sergio Costa.

"They told us that they are doing things but they are worried because people will lose their jobs," Comparelli said, adding she was instead convinced the ecological transition would help governments increase employment.

Thunberg, who was unable to participate in the press conference, met the Italian government representatives together with fellow members of the Fridays for Future campaign group, among them German Luisa Neubauer.

Rome, which is looking to cover some 30% of its gross final energy consumption from green sources by 2030, has pledged to exit coal generated production by 2025, replacing it with more renewables and gas.

(Reporting by Angelo Amante; Additional reporting by Stephen Jewkes; Editing by Alex Richardson)

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.