Just after Netflix premiered the Harry & Meghan teaser trailer, a Kensington Palace source huffed to Valentine Low at the Times: “They are two people who are accepting awards for themselves, talking about themselves, doing programmes about themselves. [William and Kate are] active members of the royal family who have a job to shine a spotlight on other people, give awards to other people. That’s the contrast.” Well, funny story – you know the big, keen Earthshot Awards which were endlessly previewed and served as a huge aggrandizement for Prince William to magnanimously “give a platform” to people doing groundbreaking environmental work? Well, William didn’t even want those Earthshot prize winners in Boston with him. Please, he might have had to touch someone poor. They did a satellite link-up for the Earthshot finalists and winners. Which wouldn’t be so egregious except that William burned through millions of dollars to put on an “awards show” with celebrities in attendance.
The food was plant-based, the flowers grown locally and the carpet, as is now tradition, was green. Guests invited to the second annual Earthshot Awards were whisked to the venue in electric taxis and encouraged to recycle pre-loved outfits.
Five budding winners each won £1 million to scale up their projects.
“A million dollars is significant,” Justin Winters, executive director of climate philanthropy organisation One Earth told the Boston Globe. “For a lot of these nonprofits and companies, it’s a game-changing investment. But I would say in this case, the level of attention and partnerships that are brought to the table — to the finalists and the award winners — are really significant.”
In order to reduce the carbon footprint, all finalists were filmed on home turf, joining the ceremony via a live video feed.
The Princess was among those who presented an award, warning that air pollution “poses a threat that knows no borders.”
Guests were treated to performances by Ellie Goulding, Annie Lennox, and Billie Eilish. After the show, the Prince and Princess went backstage to thank the celebrities who had taken part.
The royals flew home on a British Airways flight overnight to be reunited with their three children.
Arguably, the best thing one could say about Earthshot is that William is platforming diverse people making diverse solutions to environmental issues, and that Earthshot could become a place to facilitate innovation, growth and collaboration within sustainable and environmental industries. Except that for William, all of the Earthshot winners should literally stay at home, not meet with each other, not fuel collaboration or innovation, and here’s some money and now shut up about it while he chums it up with Rami Malek. They seriously made celebrities fly into Boston for a big awards show… and then didn’t invite the nominees to come to Boston. He made them stay at home. He doesn’t think that looks bad or that it should have been organized differently. He does not believe that prize winners should actually be feted and recognized for their work in person.
Photos courtesy of Cover Images.