Swedish postage stamp celebrates work of Greta Thunberg

By Jon Henley

The environmental activist Greta Thunberg has been featured on a new Swedish postage stamp, in recognition of her work to “preserve Sweden’s unique nature for future generations”.

Thunberg, who turned 18 on 3 January, is pictured standing on a rocky cliff top wearing a yellow raincoat, with swifts flying around her, as part of a set by the artist and illustrator Henning Trollbäck titled Valuable Nature.

The series, available from Thursday, features some of the 16 environmental quality goals recently drawn up by the Swedish government, including habitats designated as important to protect, said the national postal service, PostNord.

Other stamps in the set, intended for domestic letters, feature high mountains and their flora, a forest, an agricultural landscape and a uniquely biodiverse bog. This year’s European stamps include a picture of the endangered green spotted toad.

“We’re pleased that Greta, among several illustrations of important nature, will be symbolised on our stamps,” said PostNord’s Kristina Olofsdotter. “These natural places are very important and we all need to do our part to preserve them.”

Previous stamp series in Sweden have portrayed Astrid Lindgren, the children’s author who created Pippi Longstocking, the footballer Zlatan Ibrahimović and the late DJ and producer Avicii.

In a recent interview to mark her birthday, Thunberg, whose solo school strike in 2018 snowballed into a global youth movement, told the Sunday Times she had stopped flying and “consuming things” but did not judge people whose choices were less environmentally friendly than her own.

“I’m not telling anyone else what to do,” she said. “There is a risk when you are vocal about these things and don’t practise as you preach, then you will be criticised and what you are saying won’t be taken seriously.”