Caring for a fragile Earth in grave danger rather than rushing into space: less than three weeks before COP26 on the climate, Prince William, one of Queen Elizabeth II’s grandsons, has scratched Thursday the race for space tourism and called for action.
Through this explosive position, in an interview with the BBC broadcast on Thursday, William, 39, second in the order of succession to the British crown, resolutely follows in the footsteps of his father Prince Charles, defender of the long-standing environment.
“Some of the greatest brains and minds in this world must be trying to fix this planet above all else, not trying to find the next place to live,” Prince William said in this interview released ahead of the first Sunday edition of his Earthshot Prize to recognize solutions to the climate crisis.
Critics after taking a stand
This head-on criticism, rare for a member of the British royal family, comes the day after the journey of a few minutes in space made Wednesday by the actor of the cult Star Strek series William Shatner aboard a rocket from Blue Origin. At 90, he became the oldest person to reach the final frontier. It was the second manned flight of the rocket by American billionaire Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, who intends to establish himself as a key player in the coveted space tourism sector, which also includes British billionaires Richard Branson and American Elon Musk. .
The stance drew criticism, with the popular Daily Mirror (left) mocking the hypocrisy of a prince who hunted, “drove Range Rovers and flew in private planes”. On Twitter, Republic, a group campaigning for the abolition of the British monarchy, urged Prince William to “keep ill-advised opinions to himself.” If “space tourism is questionable, science benefits from space exploration”, “one can agree or not, but to receive lessons from a hypocrite with whom one cannot argue is a real problem. Republic said.
A call for the climate
Before the great United Nations climate conference which opens on October 31 in Glasgow (Scotland), to which he is due to attend like the Queen and Prince Charles, Prince William also joined his father’s climate appeal, whose long-standing environmental work he praised.
“It hasn’t been an easy road there and I think you know he was ahead, way ahead of his time in warning of some of these dangers,” he said. “It would be an absolute disaster” if George, William’s eldest son, had to be “there talking with you in 30 years, repeating the same things, because by then it will be too late”, said added Prince William.
If we are not careful we will steal the future of our children through what we do now
With his eyes riveted on COP26, Prince William also urged world leaders to take action, and not be content with “fine words”. “I want the things that I have enjoyed, the life in the great outdoors, nature, the environment, I want it to be always there for my children and not just my children but the children of everyone”, said he said. “If we are not careful, we will steal the future of our children through what we are doing now,” he insisted.
In an interview with the BBC on Monday, his father Prince Charles, 72, expressed concern that international leaders meeting in Glasgow were “just talking” during COP26, instead of taking action to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Since the signing of the Paris Agreements in 2015, the transition to a cleaner economy and energy has progressed, but too slowly to limit warming to 2 ° C, let alone 1.5 ° C, compared to the end of the XIXth century.