Prince William says we ‘owe it to our children’ to combat climate crisis

‘Our wildlife plays a vital role in keeping nature in balance and maintaining this precious cycle of life,’ says Duke of Cambridge

Olivia Petter
Tuesday 23 November 2021 12:00

The Duke of Cambridge has called on people to take action against the climate crisis for the sake of younger generations.

In a moving speech delivered at the Tusk Conservation Awards in London, Prince William said we “owe it to our children and future generations to act now” and referenced those risking their lives to protect endangered species in Africa.

“Africa remains on the frontline of conservation, playing host to the most awe-inspiring diversity of fauna and flora,” he said.

“The forests and savannahs of this vast continent are a precious form of natural capital. This not only underpins economies and supports biodiversity, but plays a critical function in our battle against climate change.”

He went on to say that Cop26 last month has led to highlighting what further action must be taken.

“It is clear that we must see the environment, conservation and climate change through the same prism and not in isolation,” he said.

“Africa’s extraordinarily rich biodiversity has the ability to sequester vast amounts of carbon.

“But this is only possible if these landscapes remain truly intact and are protected as functioning eco-systems.

“Our wildlife plays a vital role in keeping nature in balance and maintaining this precious cycle of life. If we keep destroying or removing the threads that make up the natural tapestry of life on earth, it will simply begin to break down, exacerbating climate change still further.”

Prince William has been a royal patron of the Tusk Trust since 2005, and went on to discuss how the pandemic has affected Africa.

“Africa has been hard hit, as economies, jobs and livelihoods have been devastated by lockdowns and travel restrictions,” he said.

“Many of the Tusk projects I have been lucky enough to visit have been hugely impacted, particularly where there is a dependence on tourism to underpin their conservation work.”

Additional reporting by PA.

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