Prince William launches Earthshot Prize to solve Earth's environmental problems over the next decade

The Earthshot Prize is the "the most prestigious environment prize in history."

December 31, 2019, 10:22 AM

Prince William is looking ahead to the next decade with a plan to solve some of the world's biggest environmental problems.

William, the Duke of Cambridge, unveiled on Tuesday a new initiative called the Earthshot Prize, described by Kensington Palace as "the most prestigious environment prize in history."

The multimillion-dollar prize will be awarded to five winners per year over the next 10 years, according to Kensington Palace. The goal is to encourage "Earth’s greatest problem solvers to solve Earth’s greatest environmental problems," the palace said in a statement.

"The earth is at a tipping point and we face a stark choice: either we continue as we are and irreparably damage our planet or we remember our unique power as human beings and our continual ability to lead, innovate and problem-solve," Prince William said in a statement. "Remember the awe inspiring civilisations that we have built, the life-saving technology we have created, the fact that we have put a man on the moon."

"People can achieve great things. And the next ten years present us with one of our greatest tests - a decade of action to repair the Earth," he said.

The Instagram post announcing the Earthshot Prize featured a photo of Prince William taken by his wife, Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge. Kate took the photo of William at a glacier while the couple was on an official visit to Pakistan in October.

Kensington Palace also released a film about the prize narrated by Sir David , a British broadcaster and naturalist.

Attenborough was by Prince William's side last April when William and his father Prince Charles and brother Prince Harry attended the premiere of "Our Planet," an eight-part documentary series on the impact of climate change.

Attenborough voiced the documentary. William, Harry and Charles' attendance at the premiere was a sign of the importance they place on championing environmental causes. All three royals have been involved in conservation efforts around the world

William, in particular, spearheaded the creation of United for Wildlife, which works to tackle illegal wildlife trade. He currently leads the organization, which is a project of The Royal Foundation, William and Kate's charitable arm.

William's Earthshots challenge will be formally launched later this year. The prizes will be awarded in annual awards ceremonies that will take place in different cities around the world each year between 2021 and 2030, according to Kensington Palace.

"The Prize could be awarded to a wide range of individuals, teams or collaborations – scientists, activists, economists, leaders, governments, banks, businesses, cities, and countries – anyone who is making a substantial development or outstanding contribution to solving these environmental challenges," the palace said. "In addition to a significant financial award, winners will receive large-scale public recognition for their work that will aim to inspire business and government collaboration and scaling."

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