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Eco royals: How King Charles, Prince William, Princess Eugenie & more are fighting to protect the planet

The monarch has long championed environmental causes

king charles and princesses beatrice and eugenie
Phoebe Tatham
Content Writer
22 April 2024
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Since its inception in 1970, Earth Day has evolved into a global event which is celebrated each year on 22 April. It now includes a plethora of events with organisers selecting a new theme each year. 

a student taking part in a planting competition © Getty Images
A student taking part in a planting competition in Pristina to mark Earth Day in 2022

But did you know that a host of royals are also heavily involved in making a positive impact on the planet? Keep scrolling to meet all the eco-conscious royals promoting environmental change and championing sustainability…

King Charles

The monarch is committed to protecting the planet. Even before he was crowned in September 2022, Charles has long made it his mission to introduce positive changes with regards to the environment. In the 1980s, His Majesty transformed Highgrove into an organic haven limiting the use of antibiotics and other harmful chemicals. 

man walking in garden at highgrove © Getty Images
King Charles in the gardens at his Highgrove home

He later set up Duchy Organic, with all profits going towards charitable causes via the King's own foundation. His company also supports numerous environmental initiatives including Net Zero, Terra Carta and Soil Health.

Prince William and Prince Charles inspecting cattle © Getty Images
Prince William and King Charles inspecting cattle

Meanwhile, in November last year, the King backed a new initiative from Riverwoods and Scottish Wildlife Trust that is aiming to boost the recovery of Scotland's rivers and reverse the decline of freshwater species.

Elsewhere, Charles has also introduced a number of changes at his royal residences. Aside from turning down the heating at his swimming pool at Buckingham Palace, he has also switched the heating to biomass boilers at Birkhall, installed solar panels at Clarence House and had his Aston Martin converted to run on bioethanol made from cheese and wine. In an interview with the BBC, Charles said his car runs off "surplus English white wine and whey from the cheese process."

WATCH: Charles arrives in his eco-friendly Aston DB6

When it comes to the world of fashion, the monarch is equally as committed to making positive environmental changes. He is a huge advocate for sustainable fashion and helped to launch The Campaign For Wool back in 2010. 

In an interview, the monarch said: "A major part of the change has to be moving from a linear system to a circular one, where textiles and clothing are produced sustainably, enjoy long use, and are made using natural materials, specifically wool, which will biodegrade naturally and quickly at the end of their useful life."

Beyond this, Charles has also campaigned for conservation, organic farming and ecological solutions.

Prince William

The Prince of Wales appears to be following in his father's green footsteps. Like father, like son, Prince William is also committed to protecting the environment. Most notably, he launched the Earthshot Prize in 2020, having been inspired by former US President John F. Kennedy's Moonshot project. 

The global initiative is based on five 'Earthshot' goals: Protect and restore nature; Fix our climate; Clean our air; Revive our oceans; Build a waste-free world. Each year, five £1 million prizes are awarded, with the aim of providing at least 50 solutions to the world’s greatest environmental problems by 2030.

Princess Kate and Prince William had a close friendship with the environmentalist© Getty Images
Princess Kate and Prince William chatting to David Attenborough at the 2021 Earthshot Prize

Following the late Queen's death in September 2022, Prince William said in a video message: "During this time of grief, I take great comfort in your continued enthusiasm, optimism and commitment to the Earthshot Prize and what we are trying to achieve. 

He continued: "Protecting the environment was a cause close to my grandmother's heart. And I know she would have been delighted to hear about this event."

Princess Eugenie

Sarah Ferguson and Prince Andrew's daughter Princess Eugenie is passionate about the environment, particularly when it comes to the ocean. She has been incredibly vocal about the fight against ocean plastic pollution, and in 2021, she was appointed as an ambassador for Blue Marine Foundation.

Recently, she took part in the Solent Seascape Project and helped marine scientists to clean oysters in the university lab, before returning them to the sea.

Princess Eugenie holding August Brooksbank© Getty Images
Princess Eugenie avoids using plastic at home with her husband Jack Brooksbank and their sons August and Ernest

Beyond this, the 34-year-old is also committed to making positive changes at home. Speaking with Reuters editor-at-large Axel Threlfall and Arctic Humanity founder Gail Whiteman, Princess Eugenie said: "My son's going to be an activist from two years old, which is in a couple of days. So, he, everything is for them." 

Sharing a glimpse inside her family life, she continued: "At home we have no plastic, we try to as much as possible have no plastic and I'm trying to teach him that. But it's a battle."

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To celebrate World Environment Day in 2021, Eugenie uploaded a wholesome photo featuring her husband Jack Brooksbank and their son August. In her caption, she wrote: "Thank you world for giving us such a beautiful place to live."

Amelia Windsor

Model Amelia is a notable eco warrior! The 28-year-old, who is the daughter of George Windsor, the Earl of St Andrews and Sylvana Tomaselli, is a staunch advocate for sustainable fashion. 

While her love for secondhand clothing grew over lockdown, she has since made it her priority to champion small, sustainable brands such as Pretty Ballerinas, Penelope Chilvers, Been London, Brora and Alexander Clementine, who she collaborated with on a collection of underwear crafted from seaweed.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 10: Amelia Windsor attends the BFC Summer Party 2023 at The Serpentine Pavilion on July 10, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by Shane Anthony Sinclair/Getty Images)© Getty Images
Lady Amelia Windsor is a huge advocate for sustainable fashion

During an exclusive interview with HELLO!, she said: "I think it was a case of a sudden realisation after being fed more information."

She is also a patron for Cross River Gorilla Project. In a bid to save the critically endangered animal, she regularly raises awareness and supports the rangers in the rainforest.

Queen Camilla

Queen Camilla is an eco fashion queen! The thrifty royal regularly recycles items from her wardrobe and appears to be an advocate for 'slow fashion.' 

woman wearing pink coat dress at royal wedding © Getty Images
Queen Camilla recycled her petal pink coat dress at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's royal wedding in 2018

In June last year, for instance, she stepped out at Royal Ascot wearing a familiar blush pink coat dress crafted by Anna Valentine - an item she'd previously worn to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's 2018 royal wedding. Meanwhile, in November 2023, Camilla re-wore her regal Bruce Oldfield gown that she originally donned for the monarch's coronation in May.

Prince Harry

Prince Harry founded sustainable tourism project Travalyst back in 2019 along with brands including, Skyscanner, Tripadvisor, and Visa. It aims to change the impact of travel for good, and now operates as an independent, non-profit organisation based in the UK.

group of people talking on stage at launch event © Chris Jackson
Prince Harry launched Travalyst back in 2019

Since its inception, he has also called for change in the industry through various conference appearances. Beyond this, he also starred in a skit for Maori TV alongside a host of comedians to encourage travellers to consider sustainable options when planning their next holiday.


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