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Earthshot: The 50 Million Prize program launched by Prince William to Repair the Planet

Tarun Jeen

15th October 2020

Prince William recently inaugurated a new environmental conservation program that has been in the making for months. ‘The Earthshot Prize’ has been hailed as “the most prestigious global environment prize in history”, according to The Guardian. It involves £50 Million awarded over ten years to any innovators who can make meaningful strides towards controlling the environmental deterioration on our planet.

Prince William (middle) along with Sir David Attenborough and Princess Kate (Source: Hello! Daily News)

£1 Million awards will be handed each year annually over the coming decade with the hope of incentivizing innovation and research, both individual and institutional, towards the many urgent environmental problems that we face today. Speaking about his thoughts on the matter, according to The Guardian, the Duke of Cambridge said that he felt he had a responsibility during this “crucial” decade to take meaningful action. He further mentioned that the earth was at a “tipping point” and that they “hope to have made huge strides towards fixing some of the biggest problems on earth by 2030”.

Inspired, no doubt, by John F Kennedy’s ‘Moonshot’ lunar programme, the Prize shall be focused on 5 ‘earthshots’ which are ambitious, but simple to understand: protect and restore nature, clean our air, revive our oceans, build a waste-free world and fix our climate. The Prize can be awarded to individuals, groups, institutes, and even cities, encouraging progress towards the goals mentioned above over personal glory. According to a report by Newsbreak, the Duke said that he was inspired by his father, Prince Charles and the work of Sir David Attenborough, who shall be on the panel of judges for the prestigious Prize.

“The key thing about the Earthshot Prize is that positivity. It’s the idea we need to find solutions to be able to live our lives and enjoy our lives and not feel guilty and bad about some of the things we do. That ultimately has to change, because I also worry from a mental health point of view, the anxiety and the worry that many of these younger generations are going to have. Hearing about what we’re talking about, it’s going to weigh on them. And they don’t inherit a world that is full of doom and gloom”, said the Prince to the press, elucidating his ideas on the emotional core of this programme.

The Prize has already started garnering support from prestigious organizations like the WWF and Greenpeace, along with internal backers like Bloomberg and the Jack Ma Foundation. There are even talks of the Prize having its foundation next year, supported. A global alliance of partners. The Prince said in The Guardian report that he hopes for this Prize to reach around the world and include people from all walks of life and various fields of study.

Nominations for the first five £1m prizes will open on November 1st, with more than 100 “nominators” having been selected from around the globe. The first five winners will be announced at a ceremony in London next year. A council consisting of a global team of high-profile leaders from the environmental, philanthropic, business, sporting and entertainment worlds, will award the prizes. According to a BBC report, the 13 members include actor Cate Blanchett, singer Shakira, Queen Rania of Jordan, former Japanese astronaut Naoko Yamazaki, Brazilian footballer Dani Alves, basketball star Yao Ming and of course, Sir David Attenborough.

News Sources: The Guardian, News Break, BBC News

Edited by Ayush Lahoti

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