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Queen calls for collective climate action at first-ever Earthshot Prize Innovation Summit

By JT - Sep 22,2022 - Last updated at Sep 22,2022

Her Majesty Queen Rania addresses the first-ever Earthshot Prize Innovation Summit held in New York on Wednesday (Photo courtesy of Royal Court)

AMMAN — Her Majesty Queen Rania called for mobilising collective action and ingenuity to repair the planet, and reaffirmed the transformative power of hope and innovation in the global climate battle.

As council member of The Earthshot Prize, Her Majesty made her remarks at the first-ever Earthshot Prize Innovation Summit held in New York on Wednesday on the sidelines of United Nations General Assembly week, according to statement from Her Majesty’s office.

Hosted by the UN Special Envoy on Climate Ambition and Solutions, Michael R. Bloomberg, and marking Climate Week in New York, the summit aims to showcase and highlight the impact of groundbreaking climate solutions, and connect the next generation of climate visionaries with influential world leaders.

Founded in 2020 by Prince William and The Royal Foundation, The Earthshot Prize is a global environmental prize and platform to discover, accelerate and scale trailblazing eco-innovations to regenerate the planet.

In her remarks, Queen Rania thanked the Prince of Wales for his leadership and vision and paid tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth II and her climate advocacy.

Addressing heads of state, top environmental innovators, philanthropists and prominent business leaders from across the world, Her Majesty cautioned that in this time of heightened volatility, “no one can afford to sit on the sidelines”, and “no one can claim that climate change is somebody else’s problem, or shrug it off for future generations to address”.

“We’re all affected by a warming planet, and decisions being made right now will determine our shared tomorrow. So, we must choose, and we must act as united nations,” she said.

Her Majesty stated that in order to fuel the global fight against climate change and accelerate progress, leaders must join forces and apply their collective ingenuity to repair the planet.

“If we stick together, we can make fixing the climate the greatest project, and greatest achievement, of our lifetimes,” she said.

The Queen explained that while the world is not short on climate science or solutions, it must rally the “political will” to build a safer, healthier and more stable future.

In a call for unity, Her Majesty envisioned a future where clean, green development enhances the livability of communities, enables greater equity and feeds a burgeoning global population.

Stressing the urgency of this crisis, the Queen also warned of the dire costs of climate inaction, which are “worse than any nightmare.”

“But let us be driven by hope, not fear, because hope is not passive. It is the ultimate source of renewable energy,” she said, adding that achieving carbon-neutrality can be a journey of innovation, fuelled by a spirit of possibility and driven by faith in ourselves.

In addition to hosting finalists and winners of The Earthshot Prize, and celebrating their pioneering eco-innovations, The Earthshot Prize Innovation Summit featured panel discussions and presentations spotlighting its five key pillars of climate solutions: Protect and Restore Nature, Clean Our Air, Revive Our Oceans, Build A Waste-Free World, and Fix Our Climate.

Among those who spoke at the summit were Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern, co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Bill Gates, chair of The Earthshot Prize Christiana Figueres and actor Matt Damon.

Designed to incentivise change, The Earthshot Prize is an annual prize that catalyses an Earthshot challenge to urgently scale environmental innovations that can help put the world firmly on a trajectory towards a stable climate, where communities, oceans, and biodiversity thrive by 2030. The 2022 Earthshot Prize ceremony is set to take place in Boston later this year.

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