Environment Climate Crisis ‘Climate Strike’ Named Word of the Year By Melissa Breyer Melissa Breyer Editorial Director Hunter College F.I.T., State University of New York Cornell University Melissa Breyer is Treehugger’s editorial director. She is a sustainability expert and author whose work has been published by the New York Times and National Geographic, among others. Learn about our editorial process Updated November 8, 2019 Share Twitter Pinterest Email Environment Planet Earth Climate Crisis Pollution Recycling & Waste Natural Disasters Transportation Collins dictionary lexicographers observed a 100-fold increase in its usage in 2019. Well well well. "Climate strike" has gone big time. Of course, that was made obvious by the millions of people who took to the streets this year, skipping school and work to do so. But as some icing on the climate strike cake, Collins dictionary has crowned the term as Word of the Year 2019. climate strike (ˈklaɪmɪt ˌstraɪk) noun: a form of protest in which people absent themselves from education or work in order to join demonstrations demanding action to counter climate change According to editors at the dictionary, "climate strike" was registered in November 2015 when the first event to be named such took place during the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris. But it has been over the course of the last year that the term – thanks to the efforts of student activist Greta Thunberg – has reigned supreme. "Collins’ lexicographers observed a one-hundred-fold increase in its usage in 2019," notes the dictionary. It is certainly a refreshing choice for the honor. Not surprisingly, the shortlist includes a lot of words about politics and other assorted issues of life in 2019 – two in particular are worthy of note for this artsy TreeHugger. hopepunk (ˈhəʊpˌpʌŋk) noun: a literary and artistic movement that celebrates the pursuit of positive aims in the face of adversity And one of the best words ever, rewilding (riːˈwaɪldɪŋ) noun: the practice of returning areas of land to a wild state, including the reintroduction of animal species that are no longer naturally found there And now, I will artistically skip work to go plant some trees – the dictionary told me to!