Shakira unveiled as a judge on Prince William's £50m Earthshot prize panel

PRINCE William today unveiled a star-studded list of judges including Shakira and Cate Blanchett in his new environmental campaign.

The Duke of Cambridge today launched the Earthshot Prize, offering £50million to reward innovative projects designed to save the planet.

And the 38-year-old will be joined by a string of big names from the entertainment, business and philanthropic worlds on the council.

Earthshot members will include Shakira and Cate Blanchett, along with Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdulla, former Chinese basketballer Yao Ming and Brazilian footballer Dani Alves.

The royal sat down in video chats with the judges – saying humanity was facing a "critical decade of change".

And Hips Don't Lie singer Shakira spoke of her own passion for the environment, saying: "I personally feel it is my duty as a citizen, as a human being and as a mother of two young children to bring attention to this issue before it's too late."

She added: "Your children, my children, they have to find ways to reduce carbon emissions, to repair oceans, to clean the air – we need young minds to be informed and invested.

"That's why education is so important. We can't just stand still, we have to lead the way and we have to do it now."

The singer has moved into philanthropy during her career, recently receiving a medal from the UN labor agency for her work to help impoverished children.

The 43-year-old Colombian has also supported Habitat For Humanity and performed at the charity concert Live Earth, a one off event developed to combat climate change.

Actress Cate Blanchett also spoke up, saying: "There's no greater challenge facing us as species than tackling climate change."

Other members will include Costa Rican diplomat Christiana Figueres, Sir David Attenborough, environmental activist Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, Indian-American business executive Indra Nooyi, Chinese business magnate Jack Ma, former Japanese astronaut Naoko Yamazaki and Nigerian-born economist Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.

Speaking in the video interviews, the prince added: "It's a team – I'm the very boring coach on the corner at the moment looking for some very skilful players to help me beat the 'opposition'."

The Earthshot Prize, which launched today, is the most prestigious global environment prize in history and aims to incentivise change and help to repair our planet over the next 10 years. 

The £50 million prize will provide at least 50 solutions to the world’s greatest environmental problems by 2030. 

Prince William today spoke passionately as he launched the initiative – saying he wanted to leave the world in better condition for future generations.

The dad-of-three, who is second-in-line to the throne, said he now wanted to continue his father's work in raising awareness for the environment and climate change.

It was previously revealed Prince Charles was so passionate about the environment he would take his sons William and Prince Harry, 36, to pick up rubbish at Norfolk during their summer holidays.

And Prince William explained he felt it was his "job" and "responsibility" to speak up, saying: "I think what I see is that this is a generational baton handing if you like. My grandfather started it, as David said, my father’s picked up and really accelerated that and I feel right now that it’s my responsibility.

"I really feel we are at a tipping point and I want to make sure that my grandchildren – my children and my grandchildren really, ‘cause it’s going to happen relatively fast, that we hand the planet in a better state then we found it."

Star-studded council

The Earthshot Prize Council is a truly global list of influential individuals from a wide range of different sectors, all of whom are committed to championing positive action in the environmental space.Joining Prince William as members of The Earthshot Prize Council today are:

  • Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah (Jordan)
  • Cate Blanchett – actor, producer and humanitarian (Australia)
  • Christiana Figueres – Former UN climate chief, responsible for the landmark Paris Agreement on Climate Change (Costa Rica)
  • Dani Alves – professional footballer (Brazil)
  • Sir David Attenborough – broadcaster and natural historian (UK)
  • Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim – environmental activist (Chad)
  • Indra Nooyi – business executive and former Chairman & CEO of PepsiCo (US & India)
  • Jack Ma – philanthropist, entrepreneur and UNSDG Advocate (China)
  • Naoko Yamazaki – former astronaut onboard the International Space Station (Japan)
  • Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala – economist and international development expert (Nigeria)
  • Shakira – singer and philanthropist (Colombia)
  • Yao Ming – Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer and environmentalist (China)

Every year from 2021 until 2030, The Earthshot Prize Council will award The Earthshot Prize to five winners, one per Earthshot, whose evidence-based solutions make the most progress towards the five Earthshots:

  • Protect and restore nature
  • Clean our air
  • Revive our oceans
  • Build a waste-free world
  • Fix our climate

It comes after the dad-of-three admitted his son Prince George loved watching Sir David Attenborough's documentaries – but had been left sad after seeing the film about the extinction of animals.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4, Prince William added his children were "jealous" he had got to spend so much time with Sir David as he worked on the prize.

He said: "Last night we started watching one of David’s newest documentaries as well and I had – it’s amazing – at bedtime when I can corral the children, I just shout, ‘we going to watch one of David’s documentaries’ and they come herding in.

"It’s the easiest way to catch my children and get them ready for bedtime."

The Cambridge kids last weekend starred in a sweet video asking Sir David questions about the environment.

And little Prince George quizzed the famous environmentalist about which creature would become extinct next – assured by Sir David we could act to save endangered species.

The push to raise awareness for the environment includes the Duke of Cambridge himself fronting the documentary A Planet For Us All.

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