Prince William has joined forces with renowned British broadcaster and naturalist David Attenborough to launch a new environmental award, the Earthshot Prize, which has grand ambitions to “incentivize change and help to repair our planet over the next 10 years,” reports AP.
The prize takes its inspiration from the Moonshot challenge that President John F. Kennedy set for the U.S. in 1961 to put a man on the moon by the end of the decade.
William, who has been immersed in environmental issues all his life, said the same resources used to tackle the coronavirus pandemic should be devoted to saving the natural world.
“According to the experts, it really is the point of no return,” he told Sky News. “We have 10 years to fundamentally fix our planet.”
The plan envisions five prizes of 1 million pounds ($1.3 million) awarded each year for the next 10 years, providing at least 50 solutions to the world’s greatest environmental problems by 2030.
The first five Earthshots center on protecting and restoring nature, clean air, reviving oceans, building a waste-free world and fixing the climate.
“We very much hope that even if we can’t necessarily change the world in ten years’ time just from the prize alone, what we do hope is that, just like the Moonshot landings where they developed cat scanners, X-ray machines, breathing apparatus, stuff like that I think has been really, really important to come out of that,” William said.
Nominations open on Nov. 1 with an annual global awards ceremony held in a different city each year, starting with London in the fall of 2021. William will be part of the panel that makes the decisions.
The prize fund will be provided by the project’s global alliance founding partners, a group which includes the philanthropic bodies of billionaires like Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, Alibaba founder Jack Ma, and Michael Bloomberg.
Attenborough, 94, said time is of the essence.
“Suddenly there are real dangers that there may be a tipping point in which the icecaps of the North Pole begin to melt, which it’s doing already,” he told BBC radio. “It’s a matter of great urgency now.”
William also spoke about how his seven-year-old son, Prince George, is getting concerned about what’s going on in the world. He said his son was left so saddened by an Attenborough documentary about extinction that he told his father “I don’t want to watch this anymore.”
The Queen's marriage to Prince Phillip is the longest of any British sovereign. And next month, the Royal couple will reach the milestone of 73 years of marriage. But for the past seven decades, the couple have reportedly managed to keep one secret closely guarded — an inscription inside their wedding ring.
The British Queen's wedding ring, made in Welsh gold, is inscribed with a secret message, that even those closest to the Nonarch don't know, and was chosen by then young Prince Philip in 1947, a new book has revealed.
"At least Philip didn't have the expense of a wedding ring, as the people of Wales supplied a nugget of Welsh gold from which the ring was made. She never takes it off and inside the ring is an inscription. No one knows what it says, other than the engraver, the Queen and her husband," royal biographer Ingrid Seward wrote.
According to the book, 'Prince Philip: A Portrait of the Duke of Edinburgh', the Queen's engagement ring was also a gift, as her young husband then made it from a tiara that belonged to his mother, Princess Alice of Battenberg.
Princess Alice had received it as a gift from Tsar Nicholas II of Russia when she married Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark. And before proposing, Philip, now 99, had the tiara taken apart and repurposed the diamonds to make a ring for his bride-to-be, now 94, the 'Daily Mail' newspaper reported.
The couple got married on November 20, 1947, at Westminster Abbey.
Prince Harry has recorded a special message to celebrate the 75th anniversary of children's favorite Thomas the Tank Engine.
The Duke of Sussex introduces a new program called "Thomas and Friends: The Royal Engine," which has a storyline that includes Harry's father and grandmother, Prince Charles and Queen Elizabeth II, as animated characters.
Set when the Prince of Wales was a boy, the story sees the friendly engine taking Sir Topham Hatt, the controller of the railway, to Buckingham Palace to receive an honor.
In his introduction — which was recorded in January before his move overseas — Prince Harry is seen sitting in an armchair, reading from a book about the train's adventures.
In a statement he said he has "fond memories of growing up with Thomas and Friends and being transported to new places through his adventures."
Thomas "has been a comforting, familiar face to so many families over the last 75 years — entertaining, educating and inspiring children on important issues through exciting stories and characters," he added.
In January, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, announced they planned to quit as senior royals, seek financial independence and move to North America.
The split became official at the end of March, and the couple are currently in California, where Meghan was raised.
Proof of Prince Harry's attachment to the engine can also be seen in photos of his first day attending nursery in September 1987, where he is seen carrying a Thomas the Tank Engine bag.
The Rev. Wilbert Awdry released the first book in "The Railway Series" 75 years ago. It was originally created as a bedtime story for his son, Christopher, during a bout of the measles.
The plucky blue tank engine doesn't appear in the debut story. He got his own illustrated book in 1946 called "Thomas the Tank Engine" and swiftly took over from Edward, Gordon and Henry as everyone's favorite.
The train tales were turned into a stop-motion animation series in the '80s, moving into CGI in 2009. "Thomas and Friends," owned by Mattel, is now on air in over 160 countries worldwide.
British actress Rosamund Pike is also onboard "Thomas and Friends: The Royal Engine," voicing a new character, an important train called the Duchess of Loughborough.
The show will be aired by Netflix in the U.S. on May 1 and on Channel 5's "Milkshake" show in the U.K. the following day. It will also be broadcast in Canada and Australia later in the month.
Peter Phillips, the eldest grandson of Queen Elizabeth II, and his wife Autumn are divorcing after 12 years of marriage.
The couple said in a statement Tuesday that the separation was sad but amicable. They plan to share custody of daughters Savannah, 9 and Isla, 7.
The 42-year-old Phillips is the son of Princess Anne and will be the first of the queen's eight grandchildren to divorce. Three of the monarch's four children had marriages that ended in divorce, including Anne, who split from first husband Mark Phillips in 1992 and married naval officer Timothy Laurence, her second and current spouse.
Peter Phillips married Canadian management consultant Autumn Kelly at Windsor Castle in 2008.
Announcement of their separation comes after a tumultuous few months for Britain's royal family. Last month the queen's grandson Prince Harry and his wife Meghan quit royal duties, saying they wanted to seek financial independence and spend more time in North America.
The queen's second son, Prince Andrew, also stepped down from royal duties in November amid controversy over his friendship with the late convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
Queen Elizabeth II agreed Monday to grant Prince Harry and and his wife Meghan their wish for a more independent life, allowing them to move part-time to Canada while remaining firmly in the House of Windsor.
The British monarch said in a statement that the summit of senior royals on Monday was "constructive," and that it had been "agreed that there will be a period of transition'' in which the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will spend time in Canada and the UK."
The summit at the queen's Sandringham estate in eastern England marked the first face-to-face talks with Harry since he and Meghan unveiled the controversial plan to step back from their royal roles.
"My family and I are entirely supportive of Harry and Meghan's desire to create a new life as a young family,'' the queen said in a statement. "Although we would have preferred them to remain full-time working members of the Royal Family, we respect and understand their wish to live a more independent life as a family while remaining a valued part of my family.''
The meeting came after days of intense news coverage, in which supporters of the royal family's feuding factions used the British media to paint conflicting pictures of who was to blame for the rift.
Buckingham Palace said "a range of possibilities" would be discussed, but the queen was determined to resolve the situation within "days, not weeks." Buckingham Palace stressed, however, that "any decision will take time to be implemented."
One of the more fraught questions that needs to be worked out is precisely what it means for a royal to be financially independent and what activities can be undertaken to make money. Other royals who have ventured into the world of commerce have found it complicated.
Prince Andrew, for example, has faced heated questions about his relationship with the late convicted sex offender and financier Jeffrey Epstein. Andrew, the queen's second son, has relinquished royal duties and patronages after being accused by a woman who says she was an Epstein trafficking victim who slept with the prince.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex also face questions on paying for taxpayer-funded security. Home Secretary Priti Patel refused to comment, but said safety was a priority.
There were signs earlier in the day that the House of Windsor had moved to unite. Princes William and Harry issued a joint statement criticizing a newspaper article on the severe strain in their relationship, calling the story offensive and potentially harmful as they embark on talks regarding the future of the British monarchy.
Though the statement didn't name the newspaper, the Times of London had a front page story about the crisis in which a source alleged that Harry and Meghan had been pushed away by the "bullying attitude from" William. The joint statement insisted that the story was "false.''
"For brothers who care so deeply about the issues surrounding mental health, the use of inflammatory language in this way is offensive and potentially harmful," the statement said.