A year ago, Soyoung Lee was one of a crowd of climate activists demonstrating on the streets of Seoul in a campaign inspired by the global school strike founder Greta Thunberg. Today, the 35-year-old lawyer is the youngest member of the South Korean parliament and a driving force in the government’s green new deal, which aims to create millions of jobs in renewable energy and help the economy recover from the coronavirus lockdown. Lee’s transformation highlights how much progress the global wave of youth climate activism has made in a remarkably short space of time. It also raises hopes that South Korea – a country long considered one of the world’s worst climate villains – will set a global example by accelerating the shift away from fossil fuels. Lee was invited to stand as a candidate for the president Moon Jae-in’s Democracy party in last month’s legislative elections. She proposed a green new deal in the campaign manifesto as a way to appeal to young voters.
Guardian 23rd May 2020 read more »