Prince William is continuing to grow his Earthshot Prize, which awards those who are trying to do what they can to save the planet. The future Prince of Wales is getting more direct in these efforts by calling out Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk for their race to space while ignoring climate issues.
Recently, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk have used their companies and substantial wealth to try to reach for the stars, literally.
The future King of England is not impressed.
In an interview with the BBC Newscast, the Duke of Cambridge said, “We need some of the world’s greatest brains and minds fixed on trying to repair this planet, not trying to find the next place to go and live.”
He’s also questioning what carbon emissions are being emitted by all of these flights.
But, much like his brother Prince Harry, Prince William could be called out for his own hypocrisy when it comes to travel.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have both been seen taking a helicopter to various engagements or even holidays, which usually lands right near Kensington Palace. They’ve also taken private jets, though they’ve been less demonstrative about it than Harry and Meghan and usually do take commercial flights to royal engagements and have been seen getting off of a commercial flight from Scotland.
They also have security teams that drive around with them, most likely in gas guzzling SUVs.
The New York Post editorial board had some choice words to say about it: “First off, it’s Bezos’ money to spend as he sees fit: He didn’t just earn it (let alone inherit it), he created it by developing a business that has met the needs of countless millions of customers and workers.
“And his Blue Origin enterprise, like those of rivals Elon Musk and Richard Branson, isn’t about abandoning the planet but enlarging the scope of human endeavor to the profit of all who dwell on its surface.”
There’s some truth to that.
Space exploration could also spurn great discoveries for science, medicine and, perhaps, even climate change. The competition itself, much like Thomas Edison and Nicola Tesla, could help create an environment of a fantastic explosion of ideas.
But William also has a point.
These space projects are really vanity projects, something that these CEOs can tell their friends about and brag about on social media. Do they serve a real purpose? Will they make the world better? Who knows.
It’s commendable that Prince William is really stepping up to a cause and passing down his passion for the environment to his children—however, he also must be careful that he doesn’t fall into hypocrisy like his brother.