It’s no secret that the British press loved to pick apart every single thing Meghan Markle does. So it was really easy for the British press to drag Meghan and Prince Harry when they took back-to-back private jets for a couple family vacations. Especially since Harry and Meghan say they care about the planet. Prince Charles is no doubt wishing Harry and Meghan were back in the royal family circle. Because Prince Charles is now the one getting dragged for flying private to a climate change event. Gosh, it’s so much easier to get away with private jet travel when you’re not usually the one the press is holding a hypocritical magnifying glass over.
The Daily Mail reported earlier today that Prince Charles attended the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, and delivered a speech urging business leaders in attendance to commit to doing something meaningful about climate change. He also questioned what’s the point of accumulating wealth if everything is burning around you.
"We simply cannot waste any more time"
Prince Charles calls on business leaders to tackle the "approaching [climate] catastrophe", asking them "what good is all the wealth in the world… if you can do nothing with it but watch it burn"https://t.co/RCsvioj7zG #WEF20 #Davos2020 pic.twitter.com/PmPTUJcNMB
— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) January 22, 2020
Additionally, he called for new eco-taxes, greener fuels, and hydrogen-powered planes by 2030. Prince Charles also met with Kim Kardashian’s favorite teenage eco-warrior, Greta Thunberg.
'I am still not used to this': Greta Thunberg meets Prince Charles in front of the cameras at Davos after the Royal vowed to do his 'utmost' for sustainability https://t.co/GQMpDoU0zm pic.twitter.com/4L7jKB8JR2
— ITV News (@itvnews) January 22, 2020
People magazine points out that Greta spoke yesterday, and she called out all world leaders for basically doing dick-all to prevent the planet from turning into a giant round Hot Cheeto. So clearly, she and Prince Charles had a lot to talk about (besides how strange it is to be standing like emotionally-void mannequins in front of a wall of photographers). If Prince Charles needed an ice breaker, he could have told Greta that he arrived to the World Economic Forum in an electric Jaguar. Look at Captain Planet over here! I wonder if Charles got the idea from Harry’s sustainable travel company? But something he probably didn’t want Greta to know about was his ride before he got into the electric Jaguar.
The Daily Mail says that Charles chartered a private jet from England to Switzerland that cost nearly $20,000. He reportedly plans to fly next from Davos, Switzerland, to Israel, and The Daily Mail claims it will probably cost about the same for that trip as well. And then he’s got to get home, and if he flies private again, he’s looking at nearly $60,000 on private jet travel for a couple days of work. A private jet ride produces an estimated six tonnes of carbon per passenger, compared to 0.19 tonnes that are created by sharing a cabin on a commercial flight.
But it’s not that Charles went out of his way to increase his carbon footprint by flying private, okay? The Daily Mail says Charles was “forced” to take the private jet, because his regular “ministerial jet” was having mechanical issues. A quick search on the internet shows a flight from London to Davos is about an hour and 45 minutes. There are also lots of commercial flights available, as I’m sure Prince William and Duchess Kate would have told him, had he asked.
Charles’ private secretary had this to say about his travel arrangements:
“We always look at a range of options, we take a number of factors into account when we decide how to travel, we weigh up things like cost of course with environmental impact as you’d expect, but also efficiency of time, size of delegation and crucially safety and security.”
As for Charles showing up in a green vehicle, that was a deliberate choice to keep it carbon neutral. The Clarence House official Instagram page posted a picture of him getting into his Jag at the airport, and The Daily Mail says that a whole lot of leaders in attendance traveled from the airport to the venue in gas-guzzling helicopters.
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The Prince of Wales has arrived in Switzerland where HRH will attend the World Economic Forum. The Prince of Wales travelled from St Gallen to Davos, where the event is held, in a fully electric @Jaguar I-Pace. The annual meeting brings together the world’s leaders to shape global, regional and industry agendas and discuss ways to tackle some of the biggest challenges facing the world. HRH will deliver a keynote address and launch his Sustainable Markets Council. #wef20 See our Instagram story for more ⬆️
Obviously Charles didn’t have to fly private. He could have grabbed a $78 seat on an easyJet and earned himself some very good PR. But better yet, he could have taken an even more carbon-neutral approach. Last year, Greta sailed to the US in a sailboat in 15 days. It would take less than two and a half days for someone to ride a horse from London to Davos (with a quick little ferry ride in between). Queen Elizabeth has a whole stable full of healthy, strong horses, and let’s face it – those horses could use some good publicity.