Prince William’s Earthshot Prize was launched as the Nobel Prize for the Environment

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In an interview with CNN’s Max Foster, the prince said he considers the award to be “the most prestigious global environmental award” to date and his aim is to shift the debate from pessimism and negativity to l optimism and hope.

“There are great people doing amazing things in the world, all in small communities everywhere. If one of them has an amazing idea, we can scale it up, we can use it to really solve some problem, ”he said.

From 2021, the Earthshot Prize will be awarded each year to five individuals, organizations or groups for solutions to the five “Earthshot” objectives: protecting and restoring nature, cleaning the air, reviving the oceans, building a world without waste or repair the climate.

As a result, the hope is to have at least 50 solutions to problems in each of these five areas by 2030.

Kensington Palace aims to make this award one of the most prestigious global environmental awards in history. Each winner will receive £ 1million ($ 1.3m), which is little more than a Nobel Prize winner.

In terms of the climate, the year 2020 shattered a number of heat records, sounding the alarm that the Earth is heading for a rise in global temperatures of more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says an increase above this threshold could have dangerous and potentially fatal consequences due to heat waves, sea level rise and sea level rise. water shortage, among others.

“We want to change the conversation and show that we can deliver solutions, we can tackle them, and in 10 years we can make our planet more sustainable, more prosperous and better for everyone,” the prince told CNN .

“My grandfather started doing things with conservation a long time ago, WWF in particular. My dad was ahead of his time talking about climate change. I don’t want to be ahead of my time because then we are already too late – now is the time to act. ”

Jason Knauf, chief executive of the Royal Foundation, which will oversee the award, told reporters in a briefing earlier this week that the world is in a “decisive decade for the planet.”

“We are rapidly approaching a number of tipping points and we know that if we don’t act now we may find that stopping unchecked climate change and the destruction of the natural world will simply become impossible. It’s no longer a theory, ”he said. .

Prince William came up with the idea for the prizes during a visit to Namibia, Tanzania and Kenya two years ago and has since followed the advice of dozens of individuals and organizations, including the Nobel Institute, Greenpeace, the World Economic Forum and Prince Charles, his father. .

The term Earthshot was inspired by President John F. Kennedy’s “moonshot” effort to put a man on the moon.

Nominations will begin on November 1 of this year. An annual global awards ceremony will take place in a different city each year, starting in London in the fall of 2021.

This story has been updated.

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