By Asitha Jayawardena
We must prepare to face more pandemics in the future if we fail to act on global warming and habitat loss, said Prince Charles in a virtual speech at the One Planet Summit in Paris on 11 January 2021.
The One Planet Summit
At the One Planet Summit, France is mobilising political and business leaders from across the world for action against the erosion of biodiversity. Launched in 2017, this is the third summit with the participation of 121 countries, which act as there’s no Planet B.
The Earth Charter
Launching an ambitious environment project, Prince Charles urged businesses to sign his Terra Carta pledge or Earth Charter, to place the planet first.
“I am making an urgent appeal to leaders, from all sectors and from around the world, to join us in this endeavour, and to give their support to this ‘Terra Carta’ – to bring prosperity into harmony with Nature, People and Planet over the coming decade,” he said.
The Earth Charter aims to raise £7.3 billion in “natural capital” by 2022 with the hope of preserving and restoring the natural world. It will also harness the irreplaceable power of nature while helping reunite people and planet.
“This pandemic will not be the last one unless we are very careful, so that’s why it’s critical to heal the natural world as well as ourselves,” he said.
Like Magna Carta…
Prince Charles said that Magna Carta inspired the belief of the fundamental rights and liberties of the people 800 years ago.
“As we strive to imagine the next 800 years of human progress, the fundamental rights and value of nature must represent a step-change in our ‘future of industry’ and ‘future of economy’ approach,” he said.
At 72, the Prince of Wales celebrated the 50 years of environmental campaigning. When he began speaking about environmental issues in the 1970s, he was considered “completely dotty” because climate change had not impacted as today.
Vaccines for Covid-19
Covid-19 infected Prince Charles in March 2020. Thereafter, his elder son Prince William in April got coronavirus.
Prince of Wales would get the Covid-19 vaccine. His parents, Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, gained the jab in the weekend.
“I think vaccination is critical to ensure we have a way out of this, otherwise it is going to be very difficult,” he said. “Planetary health and nature’s health is intimately linked to our own health.”
Prince William’s Earthshot Prize
The Earth Charter was launched today after the unveiling of another Prize by Prince William in October 2020. The Earthshot Prize was launched as the most prestigious global prize for the environment in history with an amount of £50m in total.
Prince William’s Earthshot Prize: £5m (5 prizes) a year, 10 years until 2030 (£50m in total) https://sustain-blog.com/2020/12/03/prince-williams-earthshot-prize-5m-5-prizes-a-year-10-years-until-2030-50m-in-total/
The One Planet Summit https://www.oneplanetsummit.fr/en