LISBON – The catamaran carrying Swedish climate change activist Greta Thunberg across the Atlantic Ocean was located on Wednesday northwest of Portugal’s Azores archipelago and 2,100 kilometers (1,140 nautical miles) from Lisbon, where she is expected to disembark next week before heading to Madrid for a major climate summit.
“Day 15. 1140 nm to Lisbon. Northwest of the Azores,” Thunberg wrote on her Instagram account, a message accompanied by a photo of her on board La Vagabonde.
The 16-year-old Swede is on course to arrive in Lisbon early next week, although the precise date will depend on the conditions she and the remainder of the crew encounter during their trans-Atlantic voyage.
Thunberg refuses to fly because she objects to the carbon emissions caused by planes and instead is riding on a catamaran owned by an Australian couple, although bad weather has made the trip more time-consuming than expected.
The teenager has been invited to participate in Lisbon in a Portuguese parliamentary session on the environment; while the young activist has expressed interest in attending, it is not clear if she will have enough time.
After arriving in Portugal’s capital, Thunberg will take part in the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP 25 in Madrid from Dec. 2-13.
That conference was initially to be held in Chile, but violent protests in that South American country led to it being relocated to Spain’s capital.
Thunberg, who has taken a sabbatical year from school, sailed from Plymouth, England, to New York City in August on board a yacht equipped with solar panels and underwater turbines that generated electric power without producing carbon emissions.
She had planned to travel by train and bus from one end of the Americas to the other, but after the Chilean conference was canceled she was forced to change course.
The Swedish activist ended up hitching a trans-Atlantic boat ride from the port of Hampton, Virginia.
Her travel companions are English professional yachtswoman Nikki Henderson and Australians Riley Whitelum and Elayna Carausu, who on YouTube document life with their 11-month-old son Lenny aboard their 15-meter-long (50-foot-long) catamaran.