February 9, 2023

Filipino Guardian

Sentinels of Filipino Free Press

Prince William hands out Earthshot awards at end of US visit

Prince William honored climate change innovators during a star-studded ceremony Friday in Boston at the culmination of a US trip marred by a racing dispute and estranged brother Harry’s Netflix series.

The heir to the British throne awarded five entrepreneurs £1 million ($1.2 million) each as part of his Earthshot Prize initiative to support efforts to save the planet from warming.

Annie Lennox and sisters Chloe x Halle were among the singers to perform at Boston’s MGM Music Hall. Actor Rami Malek and ex-soccer player David Beckham presented prizes.

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – DECEMBER 2: (LR) Prince William, Prince of Wales, Catherine, Princess of Wales and Annie Lennox attend the 2022 Earthshot Prize at MGM Music Hall in Fenway on December 2, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts. Ian Vogler-Pool/Getty Images/AFP (Photo by POOL/GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/Getty Images via AFP)Prince William hands out Earthshot awards at end of US visitBOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – DECEMBER 2: (LR) Prince William, Prince of Wales, Catherine, Princess of Wales, Halle Bailey and Chloe Bailey attend the 2022 Earthshot Prize at MGM Music Hall in on December 2, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts Fenway part. Ian Vogler-Pool/Getty Images/AFP (Photo by POOL/GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/Getty Images via AFP)Britain’s Prince William, Prince of Wales, and Catherine, Princess of Wales speak with actor Rami Malek after attending the second annual Earthshot Prize Awards ceremony at MGM Music Hall December 2, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts to have. (Photo by BRIAN SNYDER / POOL / AFP)Guests attend the Earthshot Prize Awards at MGM Music Hall on December 2, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by David L. RYAN / POOL / AFP)Britain’s Prince William, Prince of Wales, and Catherine, Princess of Wales arrive for the Earthshot Prize ceremony at MGM Music Hall in Boston, Massachusetts on December 2, 2022. (Photo by ANGELA WEISS / AFP)BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – DECEMBER 2: Catherine, Princess of Wales, Prince William, Prince of Wales and Ellie Goulding attend the 2022 Earthshot Prize at MGM Music Hall in Fenway on December 2, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts. Ian Vogler-Pool/Getty Images/AFP (Photo by POOL/GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/Getty Images via AFP)

The judges included British naturalist and TV presenter David Attenborough and actress Cate Blanchett.

Winners included a woman-founded start-up offering cleaner-burning stoves to women in Kenya and a UK company making biodegradable packaging from seaweed.

“I believe the Earthshot solutions you saw tonight prove we can solve some of our planet’s greatest challenges. And by supporting and scaling them, we can change our future,” William told the audience.

The ceremony, now in its second year, has been dubbed Williams’ “Superbowl moment” by royal insiders and came at the end of Williams and his wife Kate’s first visit to the United States in eight years.

The couple’s three-day trip to Boston focused on the environment as they discussed sea-level rise with local officials and toured a lab specializing in green technologies. William met briefly with President Joe Biden on Friday.

The trip began under a cloud on Wednesday after William’s godmother Susan Hussey apologized and left the royal household for repeatedly asking a black Brit where she was “really” from during a reception at Buckingham Palace the previous day.

A spokesman for the royal couple told reporters in Boston that William thought it was right that 83-year-old Hussey had resigned.

Then on Thursday, Netflix unveiled a trailer for its six-part docuseries, in which Harry and his wife Meghan Markle open up about their lives in the royal family they left in 2020.

Harry and Meghan, a former mixed-race TV actress, cited racism in the royal household as one of the reasons behind their acrimonious departure and relocation to California nearly three years ago.

– ‘Halftime Show’ –

Omid Scobie, a close friend and the couple’s biographer, tweeted that the series, set to air December 8, will show “the other side of their love story and the challenges they faced.”

“If tomorrow is Prince Williams Super Bowl then here is your halftime show,” he wrote.

Launched in October 2020, the Earthshot Prize was inspired by US President John F. Kennedy’s “Moonshot” project in the 1960s to put a man on the moon.

Kenya’s Mukuru Clean Stoves won the Clean our Air category for its charcoal, wood and sugar cane biomass stoves, which burn 70 percent fewer pollutants than traditional stoves and cost just $10.

London-based Notpla received the Build a Waste-Free World award for its packaging products made from algae.

The Protect and Restore Nature award went to Indian company Kheyti, whose greenhouses protect smallholder farmers’ crops from unpredictable weather and destructive pests.

The Queensland Indigenous Women Rangers Network won the Revive our Oceans category for training more than 60 women in techniques to protect Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

The Fix our Climate award went to Oman-based company 44.01, which removes cardon dioxide from the atmosphere by converting it into peridotite rock stored underground.