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Prince William has launched what reports describes as ‘the most prestigious global environment prize in history’ in a bid to save the planet by 2030.
The Earthshot prize will award five £1,000,000 prizes over the next 10 years to individuals, organizations, or countries which are seeking out solutions to some of the world’s most pressing environmental problems.
Prince William – who set up the award through his Royal Foundation – said he was inspired by veteran environmentalist Sir David Attenborough (a judge on the prize) as well as his father Prince Charles in working towards creating the prize, which has five ambitious goals.
These goals are to protect and restore nature, to clean our air, to revive our oceans, build a waste-free world, and fix our climate. Individual people, people-powered movements, businesses, cities, and countries from around the world can be nominated for the prizes.
A council of 11 high profile members will award the prizes. Members include Sir David Attenborough, Japanese former astronaut Naoko, Queen Rania of Jordan, singer Shakira, actor Cate Blanchett, Brazilian footballer Dani Alves, and basketball star Yao Ming.
‘A bit of hope’
Launching the ‘certainly ambitious’ prize, which took 18 months to put together, Prince William said: “I felt very much that there’s a lot of people wanting to do many good things for the environment and what they need is a bit of a catalyst, a bit of hope, a bit of positivity that we can actually fix what’s being presented.
“And I think that urgency with optimism really creates action. And so the Earthshot prize is really about harnessing that optimism and that urgency to find solutions to some of the world’s greatest environmental problems.”
The royal, who believes this decade is ‘one of the most crucial decades for the environment’, added: “We must have some hope, we must have some optimism, because if we don’t it is all too much, it is very apocalyptic about things.
“These are grave times for the environment. But I do believe in human ingenuity, and I do believe in the younger generations speaking up as they are now, that they will not stand for this lack of hope.”
On November 1, nominations for the first five prizes will open, chosen by more than 100 nominators chosen from around the world. The winners will be announced next year.