Kim Wilde hails the ‘immense impact’ Greta Thunberg has had on her family

By Alex Green, PA Entertainment Reporter

Kim Wilde has defended Greta Thunberg against her critics, saying the debate over climate change is “not about” the teenage activist being an “icon”.

The Kids In America singer, 59, said Thunberg had had an “immense impact” on how she and her children viewed the environment.

Wilde, who shares two children with her actor husband Hal Fowler, praised 16-year-old Thunberg for pointing the public towards the science.

Teenage climate change activist Greta Thunberg (Kirsty Wigglesworth/PA)

Donald Trump, Piers Morgan and Jeremy Clarkson are among those who have criticised Thunberg, with The Grand Tour host Clarkson calling her a “spoilt brat”.

The English pop star told the PA news agency: “Greta Thunberg has had an immense impact on the world and especially on people, not least the young people living in our house.

“We have always tried to do our best in recycling and looking very hard at what we buy but, of course, like most households, there is massive room for improvement.

“I would say Greta has kick-started my family into a better, sustainable, environmentally friendly wave.”

She said she tried to cut down on waste and recycle but admitted to still flying for her work.

“I still fly and I drive a car,” she said.

“I still do all those things that a lot of us do. But I am very, very mindful and I do try to mitigate my impact on the planet.

“I think the way that she points everyone to the science is very compelling. It’s not about her opinion and it’s not about her being an icon. It’s not about her at all.

“She is an incredible messenger. She keeps pointing at the obvious: ‘Listen to the science.’

“I love that. Just recently, just today, there has been a big announcement by a large group of scientists underlining the climate emergency.

Kim Wilde joins her father Marty Wilde at his home in Hertfordshire (Ian West/PA)

“She has aligned in that thinking and that is incredibly powerful.”

She is the daughter of Marty Wilde, the 50s rock and roll star who shot to fame with songs such as A Teenager In Love, Jezebel and Donna.

Wilde said she had not spoken to her father, 80, about the issue and suggested the older generations might be less willing to radically alter their lifestyles to stop climate change.

She added: “It’s not something we have discussed recently, I have to say. I think it’s not just for the young people to act, obviously. It is a cross-generation thing.

“Maybe the older generation are used to a lifestyle and aren’t willing to make changes. I don’t know. I wouldn’t generalise about that.

“It seems to be a subject that knows no age boundary. And why should it? It affects everyone young and old.”

Here Come The Aliens, Wilde’s 14th record released last year, peaked at number 21 in the charts and followed her first UK theatre tour in nearly 30 years.

Wilde embarks on another UK tour next year, starting at The Sage in Gateshead on September 16 and ending at Cliffs Pavilion in Southend on September 27.