Barcelona, September 21 (EFE).- Olivia Mandle lives in Barcelona, she is 15 years old and is already called the ‘Spanish Greta Thunberg’ for her activism in favor of the environment, against climate change and the protection of animals. “Politicians do not want to listen, they only deal with big companies and their economic interests,” he denounces.
In an interview with Efe, Mandle, who wants to study marine biology and create a marine sanctuary on the Costa Brava, says politicians “don’t want to listen to these young people who have something to say about animal welfare and change. because they know we are right and they only think about economic interests”.
“The upper echelons do not want to see reality”, shouts the young woman, who is multiplying on social networks, in which she has more than 5.5 million followers, gives numerous conferences and has been appointed ambassador of the European Pact. by le Climat for its influence on young people.
Being compared to Greta Thunberg is “an honor” for her because she considers that the young Swedish activist has done a wonderful job “in mobilizing thousands of young people in the streets around the world”.
Mandle has established herself as a leading animal welfare and climate change activist with a message backed by the scientific community, but “still unheard by governments and big business, who are the ones who own the key to the problem.
“A big part of the climate change problem is big business interests, which materialize in issues like overfishing or high consumption of animal products,” Mandle said.
“Overfishing -he underlines- damages the oceans, the seabed and its biodiversity and contributes to the fact that many dolphins are captured, die of suffocation or are sold and abused for the leisure and business of others. “
Mandle also denounces the paradox that big companies are “trying to jump on the sustainability bandwagon with ‘greenwashing’ campaigns”.
“Meat or dairy companies can put images of cows grazing in a field, but they are really locked up to be fattened and inseminated in an unnatural way and end up on our plates”, warns the activist, who points out that the Food of animal origin is one of the three main causes of environmental problems.
This ESO student believes that one of the keys to the fight against climate change lies in the new generations: “education is essential because if we explain to children in simple words what is happening with climate change and animals in captivity, they will internalize it and they will be able to tell the people around them”.
INVENTOR OF THE ‘JELLY CLEANER’
To raise awareness, Mandle created the “jelly cleaner”, a tool made from recycled materials that collects microplastics found on the surface of the sea.
“The most curious look at me when I use it at sea, they ask me and I explain to them the problem of microplastics, and in this way I get them to think about climate change”, explains the young woman while using it during of the interview. with Efe on the beach of Sant Sebastian in Barcelona.
The activist encourages “all young people to unite with the same goal of protecting the planet and its inhabitants”, bringing a “little grain of sand” so that their voice “can reach those who make the decisions and mark the change” .
In her fight against climate change, Mandle has specialized in the defense of dolphins because, as a child, she was shocked by the captivity of these animals in a show in Barcelona.
She remembers that while the other children were playing ball or dolls, she was playing “saving animals or putting out fires”.
Two years ago, Mandle promoted a campaign through the Change.org platform that collected more than 50,000 signatures asking Barcelona Zoo to transfer the three dolphins that remained in the zoo to a marine sanctuary, but they were eventually taken away in another zoo in Athens. .
He also led the “This is not a country for dolphins” campaign for a few years, demanding that the government pass a law that marks the scheduled closure of dolphinariums in Spain.
“Spain wants to be a leader in ecological transition but it won’t be able to be if it continues to be the largest dolphin prison in Europe, and the sixth country in the world with the most captive dolphins – nearly a hundred-”, according to the young activist.
Despite collecting more than 135,000 signatures and the support of scientists and marine institutions, Mandle regrets that due to economic interests linked to the captivity of dolphins, they criticized his campaign calling it a “childish whim”. , in order “to infantilize their fight and discredit her.”
But she does not get tired of it, she frequents all the media with confidence and calls for the environment, the protection of animals and against climate change to see if one day this alert “will finally reach the highest levels”.