Fraser Myers has written a great piece on Spiked, lambasting the hypocrisy of Prince William for lecturing us about climate change at the Platinum Jubilee concert on Saturday night. As Fraser points out, he arrived at the concern in a helicopter and thanks to all the helicopters, private jets, motorcades and vast palaces, the Royal Family probably produces a carbon footprint 50 times greater than that of the average U.K. family.
The royals’ hypocrisy on the climate issue is a recurring phenomenon. Who could forget Prince Harry taking a private jet to a Google-run retreat in Sicily, where he delivered a lecture, in his bare feet, on the dangers of climate change? Prince Charles is by far the most vocal of the royals on environmental issues. He proudly displays his green credentials by driving a cheese-powered Aston Martin and having conversations with his plants. But he also has by far the highest carbon footprint of all the royals, largely due to the staggering amount of land he owns.
The Jubilee speech was not Prince William’s first foray into green politics, either. In the past, he has bemoaned the potential impact of space tourism on the planet, he has discussed climate change with David Attenborough at the World Economic Forum, and he launched the Earthshot Prize for green-friendly innovation.
All this green advocacy might all sound harmless – charitable, even. But it is anything but. While the likes of Prince William talk in vague soundbites about ‘restoring our planet’ and ‘taking better care of our world’, what this means in practice is becoming clearer by the day. The Net Zero agenda represents a significant curtailment of our quality of life and an enormous constraint on economic growth. In the U.K., climate policies are already contributing to a near-unprecedented spike in energy prices, causing enormous pain to households and industry.
And this is just the beginning. The UK’s Climate Change Committee believes that more than 60 per cent of future emissions reductions will not come from improvements in technology, which might be painless and unobjectionable, but from ‘behaviour change and individual choices’. Needless to say, these will not be voluntary changes. Efficient, cheap and proven methods of producing energy, heating our homes and moving around will be phased out, banned or taxed very heavily. More expensive and less reliable eco-friendly methods will be encouraged or mandated.
These measures aren’t the inevitable consequence of the situation we find ourselves in. They represent a political choice to place environmental concerns above our liberties and living standards. And their impact will be felt most by the least well-off, who will be priced out of the modern conveniences that we today take for granted. It is simply untenable for an uber-privileged member of the royal family to effectively demand harsh eco-austerity for the public while posing as above the political fray.
Worth reading in full.