Prince Charles criticised for flying 125 miles to give speech on reducing aircraft emissions

Prince of Wales offsets carbon footprint every year, Clarence House says

Olivia Petter
Sunday 02 February 2020 12:19 GMT
Time has run out to save the planet says Prince Charles

The Prince of Wales has been criticised for flying 125 miles in a private helicopter to deliver a speech about lowering aircraft emissions.

The royal flew from Highgrove to Cambridge to give a lecture at the Whittle Laboratory, where he spoke to researchers about the decarbonisation of air travel.

In his speech at the University of Cambridge laboratory, Charles urged researchers to “act quickly to rescue this poor old planet”.

Reports claim that the total trip would have caused carbon emissions of roughly 2.5 tonnes and cost roughly £12,000.

Charles, who regularly speaks about the dangers of climate change, has been criticised by activists such as Graham Smith, chief executive of campaign group Republic.

“He wants to play the role, but not walk the walk,” Mr Smith told the Daily Mirror.

“His view seems to be that it’s one rule for him and one rule for the rest of us. Driving or using the train would have been pretty easy.”

Responding to criticisms, Clarence House issued a statement defending the prince, explaining his carbon footprint is offset every year.

“The prince is not personally involved in decisions around his transportation arrangements, though he ensures all carbon emissions are offset every year,” a spokesperson said.

“They are made based on what is possible within the constraints of time, distance and security.

“In order for him to undertake as many engagements as he does across the UK and around the world he sometimes has to fly.

“As he has often said, as soon as there is a more sustainable way of making these journeys, he’ll be the first to use it.”

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