Thunberg danced to Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” on Saturday, in front of a crowd at Climate Live, a youth-led concert for climate action.
“Rickrolling” is an internet phenomenon that involves getting someone to unwittingly open the video of Astley’s hit 80s song by using disguised hyperlinks.
Thunberg showed her moves off to an enamored audience as she danced and sang to the song atop a stage in Stockholm in a video posted to Climate Live’s TikTok. Astley himself shared footage of the dance, calling it “fantastic.”
The concert was staged ahead of COP26, the 26th Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Climate Change, which will take place this November.
The international climate talks in Glasgow couldn’t come at a more crucial time.
A state-of-the-science report published by the UN in August showed that the world is warming faster than scientists previously thought, and that slashing greenhouse gas emissions by at least half this decade is crucial to staving off the more catastrophic impacts of the climate crisis.
More than 190 countries signed up to the Paris Agreement after the COP21 meeting in 2015, to limit the increase in global temperatures to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, but preferably to 1.5 degrees.
Although the Paris Agreement was a landmark moment in the quest to address the climate crisis, it didn’t include details on how the world would achieve its goal. The subsequent COPs have sought to make the plans attached to it more ambitious and to detail courses of action.
But 18-year-old Thunberg took aim at world leaders — including US President Joe Biden and the UK’s Boris Johnson — at a youth climate summit in Milan last month, saying the past 30 years of climate action had amounted to “blah, blah, blah.”
“This is not about some expensive, politically correct dream at the bunny hugging or blah, blah, blah. Build back better, blah, blah, blah. Green economy, blah, blah, blah,” she said.
“Net zero, blah, blah, blah. Climate neutral, blah, blah, blah. This is all we hear from our so-called leaders — words, words that sound great but so far, has led to no action or hopes and dreams. Empty words and promises,” she added.