October 15, 2021: -Prince William appears to have taken a swipe at the space tourism espoused by some of the most high-profile billionaires of the world. Speaking to the BBC, William said.
“We’ve seen everyone trying to get space tourism going, and we need some of the greatest brains and minds fixed on trying to repair this planet, trying to find the next place to go and live.”
The Duke of Cambridge’s comments which were broadcast in full on Thursday, come in the same week that the 90-year-old actor William Shatner is launching into space by Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin.
“What you have given me is the most profound experience I can imagine. I’m filled with emotion about what just happened.” Bezos himself undertook a spaceflight on July 20.
On July 11, a Virgin Galactic spacecraft carries the billionaire Richard Branson, among others, completed a spaceflight. Another billionaire involved in the sector is Elon Musk, through SpaceX.
While these companies have generated a significant amount of publicity and interest, it appears the second in line to the British throne will not be using their services anytime soon.
The BBC asked William if he would like to be a space tourist one day. “I have absolutely no interest in going that high,” he answered. The BBC has reported him as stating there was a “fundamental question” related to the carbon footprint of such trips.
In an interview with CNN in July before his trip, it was put to him that critics were calling the flights to space “joyrides for the wealthy” and that his time, money, and energy would be better spent focusing on Earth-based problems.
“Well, I say they’re largely right,” he replied. “We have to do lots of problems in the here and now on Earth, and we need to work on those, and we always need to look to the future. We’ve always done that as a species, as a civilization, and we have to do both.”
The Duke of Cambridge is not a member of Britain’s royal family to express environmental views. In Sept. 2020, Prince Charles’s father called for a “Marshall-like plan for nature, people and planet.”
Earlier this week, Charles told the BBC. “My old Aston Martin, which I’ve had for 51 years, runs on, can you believe this, surplus English white wine and whey from the cheese process.”