Billionaire fashion CEO says Greta Thunberg is ‘demoralising for young people - News48 (BST)

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Billionaire fashion CEO says Greta Thunberg is ‘demoralising for young people

French luxury group LVMH Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Bernard ArnaultAFP/GETTY IMAGES

Speaking to journalists at his company’s sustainability event in Paris, Europe’s richest man Bernard Arnault criticized climate activist Greta Thunberg for “surrendering to catastrophism.”

Arnault, whose giant group LVMH boasts Fendi, Christian Dior and Givenchy amongst its luxury brands, said of the teenage campaigner in comments reported by AFP, “I find that her views are demoralizing for young people. ... She’s a dynamic young girl, but she’s surrendering completely to catastrophism.”

Championing his own “green” goals Arnault said, “We believe that environmental performance is a source of innovation, creativity, excellence and must be considered in all design and manufacture activities. We are committed to accelerating our work in that field and going even further.”

Greta Thunberg speaks at the United Nations (U.N.) where world leaders are holding a summit on climate change /GETTY IMAGES

Fashion brands like LVMH are in the spotlight of climate change activists over their sustainability and supply chains. LVMH has promised to reduce its carbon emissions by 25% by 2020 and would make its full chain traceable, including fur to individual farms, by 2025.

The criticism lands just two days after the 16-year-old appealed to heads of state at the UN Summit in New York over their “betrayal” in the fight against global warming.

After being joined by millions of young people in protests worldwide to demand emergency action on climate change, Thunberg told the UN: “You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words. … The eyes of all future generations are upon you. And if you choose to fail us I say we will never forgive you. We will not let you get away with this. Right here, right now is where we draw the line.”

With an estimated net worth approaching $100 billion Bernard Arnault’s wealth continues to grow. In 2019 his luxury goods group posted record sales and profits thanks in part to increased spending by Chinese customers.

Bernard Arnault attends the presentation of the group's environmental "Life" programAFP/GETTY IMAGES

For the first quarter 2019, LVMH recorded revenue of $13.6 billion (€12.5 billion) an increase of 16%.


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