Luisa Neubauer

Luisa-Marie Neubauer (born 21 April 1996)[1] is a German climate activist. She is one of the main organisers of the school strike for climate movement in Germany, where it is commonly referred to under its alternative name Fridays for Future.[2][3] She advocates a climate policy that complies with and surpasses the Paris Agreement and endorses de-growth. Neubauer is a member of Alliance 90/The Greens and the Green Youth.[4]

Luisa Neubauer
Luisa Neubauer, 05.05.2019 (cropped).jpg
Neubauer in 2019
Luisa-Marie Neubauer

(1996-04-21) 21 April 1996 (age 25)
OccupationClimate activist
MovementSchool strike for climate
Luisa-Marie Neubauer (on the left) with Greta Thunberg (on the right) in March 2019, during a climate protest in Hamburg.
Luisa Neubauer at TINCON re:publica at Berlin-Kreuzberg on 7 May 2019


Neubauer was born in Hamburg as the youngest of four siblings. Her mother is a nurse.[4] Her grandmother was married for some years to Feiko Reemtsma. She got involved in the anti-nuclear movement of the 1980s, sensitized Luisa Neubauer to the climate problem and gave her her share of the taz cooperative.[5] Two of her three older siblings live in London.[6] Her cousin Carla Reemtsma is also a climate activist.[7]

Neubauer grew up in Hamburg-Iserbrook district and completed her high school diploma at the Marion-Dönhoff-Gymnasium [de] in Hamburg-Blankenese in 2014.[8] In the year after her graduation she worked for a development aid project in Tanzania and on a ecological farm in England.[9] In 2015 she started studying geography at the University of Göttingen. She did a semester abroad at the University College London[1] and received scholarships from the German government[10] and the Alliance 90/The Greens-affiliated Heinrich Böll Foundation.[11] In 2020 she completed her studies with a Bachelor of Science.[12]

Early activismEdit

Neubauer has been a youth ambassador of the non-governmental organization ONE since 2016.[13] She was also active for the Foundation for the Rights of Future Generations,[14], the Right Livelihood Award foundation,[1] the Fossil Free campaign[1] and The Hunger Project.[15] With the campaign Divest! Withdraw your money! she forced the University of Göttingen to stop investing in industries that make money with coal, oil or gas.[16]

Fridays For FutureEdit

As of the beginning of 2019, Neubauer became known as one of the leading Fridays For Future activists. Many media outlets refer to her as the "German face of the movement." Neubauer rejects comparisons of herself and other strike organisers to Greta Thunberg, saying: "We're building a mass-movement and reaching out quite far in our methods of mobilising and gaining attention. What Greta does is incredibly inspiring but actually relatively far from that."[17]

Neubauer does not see the strikes as a means of directly affecting politics. More important is the work behind the strikes: "What we're doing is incredibly sustainable. We're creating structures and turning the events into educational experiences. And we're leading debates on the principles of climate protection."[18]

Following the protests of Fridays For Future Germany against Siemens for a specific infrastructure project in Australia, Neubauer met Joe Kaeser in January 2020. On 13 January 2020, it was announced that Neubauer had turned down an offer by Joe Kaeser to sit on the Siemens Energy board. In a statement Neubauer said that “If I were to take it up, I would be obliged to represent the company’s interests and could never be an independent critic of Siemens,” she explained. “That is not compatible with my role as [a] climate activist.”.[19] Joe Kaeser stated that he did not offer Neubauer a seat in the companies' Board, but that he is open to have Neubauer on a Board on environmental questions [20]

On the day before Siemens announced that they will keep the contract with Adani to provide the rail infrastructure of the Carmichael coal mine in Australia. Neubauer told the news agency DPA: “We asked Kaeser to do everything possible to stop the Adani mine. Instead he will now profit from this disastrous project.“ She added that this decision was “so last century“ and that Kaeser was making an “unforgivable mistake”.[19]


Neubauer received negative press coverage for her past flights to countries all around the world;[21][22] she responded that any criticism of her personal consumption distracts from larger structural and political issues.[6]

Alexander Straßner [de], a professor of political science at the University of Regensburg, accused her of using the term “old white men“ as a synonym for people with different opinions to discredit people with different opinions.[23]


  1. ^ a b c d Neubauer, Luisa (2019). "Bewerbung um einen Platz im Europawahlkampfteam der Grünen Jugend". Grüne Jugend (in German). Archived from the original on 2019-02-09.
  2. ^ Traufetter, Interview Conducted By Gerald; Amann, Melanie (2019-03-19). "The Climate Activist vs. the Economics Minister: 'My Generation Has Been Fooled'". Spiegel Online. Retrieved 2019-09-24.
  3. ^ Graham-Harrison, Emma (2019-08-10). "Greta Thunberg takes climate fight to Germany's threatened Hambach Forest". The Observer. ISSN 0029-7712. Retrieved 2019-09-24.
  4. ^ a b Güßgen, Florian (2019-05-22). "Luisa Neubauer, die Laut-Sprecherin bei "Fridays for Future"". (in German). Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  5. ^ Unfried, Peter (2020-02-27). "Ein Profi des Protestes". Rolling Stone. 305: 81.
  6. ^ a b Siebert, Jasmin (2019-02-12). "Luisa Neubauer". (in German). Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  7. ^ Ceballos Betancur, Karin; Knuth, Hannah (2020-02-05). "Wohin am Freitag?". (in German). Retrieved 2020-04-17.
  8. ^ Greulich, Matthias (2019-01-29). ""Wir sind laut, weil ihr uns die Zukunft klaut" – Luisa Neubauer aus Iserbrook ist Mitorganisatorin der Schülerdemos Friday for Future". (in German). Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  9. ^ Jessen, Elisabeth (2019-04-06). "Eine Hamburgerin ist die "deutsche Greta Thunberg"". (in German). Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  10. ^ Grünewald, Sven (2016-09-15). ""Wer einmal dabei ist, bleibt dabei"". (in German). Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  11. ^ Kaiser, Mareice (2019-02-12). "Klimaaktivistin Luisa Neubauer: "Ich hoffe, dass ich nicht noch 825 Freitage streiken muss"". (in German). Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  12. ^ "Klimaaktivistin Neubauer hat Bachelorstudium abgeschlossen". DIE WELT. 2020-06-17. Retrieved 2020-11-13.
  13. ^ Böhm, Christiane (2016-06-16). "Warum geht mich das etwas an?". Göttinger Tageblatt (in German). Retrieved 2020-11-13.
  14. ^ "#YouthRising und das Beharren auf einen Platz am Tisch". Stiftung für die Rechte zukünftiger Generationen (in German). 2019-06-24. Retrieved 2020-11-14.
  15. ^ "Fokus Wasser – Schwerpunkt Afrika – Jahresbericht 2016" (PDF). Das Hunger Projekt. 2017-10-01.
  16. ^ Jacobs, Luisa (2018-08-01). "Klimaschutz an der Uni: "Mit Divestment erreicht man auch die Nicht-Ökos"". Die Zeit (in German). ISSN 0044-2070. Retrieved 2020-03-08.
  17. ^ Schülerstreik: Organisatorin Luisa Neubauer im Interview. "Wir sind nicht mehr zu übersehen". Abgerufen am 31. März 2019
  18. ^ Mit voller Wucht. Luisa Neubauer ist das deutsche Gesicht der Klimaproteste. Wie wurde sie zur Aktivistin einer globalen Bewegung? Eine Begegnung auf Demonstrationen in Paris und Berlin. In: Die Zeit, 14. März 2019, S. 65. Onlinefassung; abgerufen am 16. März 2019.
  19. ^ a b Connolly, Kate (2020-01-13). "Climate activist turns down Siemens' offer of seat on energy board". Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  20. ^ "Meeting with Luisa Neubauer, according to Joe Kaeser, war is not a "PR gag"" (in German). 2020-01-26. Retrieved 2021-03-18.
  21. ^ Plickert, Philip (2019-02-16). "Grüne, Klimaschützer und Vielflieger". (in German). Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  22. ^ Fleischhauer, Jan (2019-02-21). "Der grüne Übermensch". (in German). Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  23. ^ Straßner, Alexander (2019-07-11). "Ein Hilfeschrei der Jugend? Eher ein Vorbote extremistischen Denkens". (in German). Retrieved 2020-01-14.

External linksEdit