Prince William was in New York City earlier this week to announce the Earthshot Prize finalists, an initiative he founded in 2020.
While his father, King Charles, is also an environmentalist, the two have very different approaches.
Royal correspondent Richard Kay was a guest on the Palace Confidential podcast recently and was asked to analyze how the paid differ.
He said: “I think Prince William has really captured that American spirit, that ‘can do’ spirit, that optimism. That’s what the Earthshot Prize is all about. His father (King Charles), over the years, he’s been a a bit of a profit on the environment stuff, but he has been very gloomy. He always reminds me of that character in Dad’s Army, ‘We’re doomed, we’re doomed.’” And he’s always warning how we only have so many years left before we all die or whatever.”
The description paints a distinction between the two men and their temperaments.
While in New York, William met with a number of people.
Kay comments: “He had some major figures alongside him. He met with the UN Secretary-General (António Guterres), the former New Zealand Prime Minister (Jacinda Arder), and, of course, Mike Bloomberg, the ex-New York Mayor — some powerful figures.”
He went on to discuss how William presented, saying, “But, two things struck me about that trip, it’s all over now, one, that he went solo, no Kate, to steal headlines and the fact that he was much more comfortable when he met people like (Bill) Gates, who are sort of onboard with his Earthshot project.
And much more uncomfortable when he met a president, he met a Latin American president (Guillermo Lasso), the conversation was rather stilted, it was all done through a translator. On those occasions, William doesn’t have the fluidity of his father (King Charles), who is so wonderful at that sort of meeting, on those occasions. He’s learning. It was impressive.”
If Earthshot is new to you, the mission of the organization, reads: “We want to unleash the urgent optimism required to accelerate and scale the environmental innovations that will repair and regenerate our planet. Our challenge to the world is based on five Earthshots – simple but ambitious and universal goals for 2030 developed in collaboration with leading environmental experts.”
The finalists are: Accion Andina – Peru, Freetown the Tree Town – Sierra Leone, Belterra – Brazil, Polish Smog Alert – Poland, Enso – United Kingdom, GRST – Hong Kong, Abalobi – South Africa, Coastal 500 – Global with US-based headquarters, WildAid Marine Program – Global with US-based headquarters, S4S Technologies – India, Circ Inc. – US, Colorifix – UK, Sea Forest – Australia, Aquacycl – US, Boomitra – Global with US-based headquarters.
The winner will be announced in Singapore on Tuesday, November 7.