The Prince of Wales has got the backing of multinational firms to help bring about a more sustainable future for the planet with his new Earth charter: Terra Carta.
Charles hopes to raise £7.3 billion to invest in the natural world, and harness the “irreplaceable power of nature”, the prince will say in his virtual address to the One Planet Summit on Monday.
The 17-page, 85-point Terra Carta, sets out an immediate ten-point action plan for businesses, showing them the route to a more sustainable future. It comes from the Royals’ The Sustainable Markets Initiative, launched by Charles in January 2020; the initiative aims to support communities, businesses, investors and consumers to take the urgent and necessary steps required to transition to more sustainable practices.
Having campaigned for a greener world for 50 years now, the Prince spoke at the One Planet Summit in Paris: “I am making an urgent appeal to leaders, from all sectors and from around the world, to give their support to this Terra Carta, to bring prosperity into harmony with nature, people and planet over the coming decade.
🌎 Earlier today, The Prince of Wales spoke virtually at the #OnePlanetSummit in Paris. He announced the launch of @TheSMI’s ‘Terra Carta’: an initiative providing advice for businesses to move towards a sustainable future. pic.twitter.com/B4XZJAp23q
— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) January 11, 2021
“I can only encourage, in particular, those in industry and finance to provide practical leadership to this common project, as only they are able to mobilise the innovation, scale and resources that are required to transform our global economy.”
The future King hopes it will put an end to decades of unfulfilled agreements on the environment and give ‘our children and grandchildren the future they deserve’.
Charles believes the way to ensure the success is by targeting the private sector and big business first.
Terra Carta’s statement of intent includes voluntary commitments to supporting international agreements on the climate, biodiversity and desertification, backing efforts to protect half of the planet by 2050, and make investment and financial flows consistent with a future of low greenhouse gas emissions.
The charter aims to raise more finance to invest in nature, citing the example of the Natural Capital Investment Alliance, which is looking to raise $10bn (£7bn) by 2022.
Companies supporting the launch include BlackRock, Bank of America and HSBC. Some current signatories are linked to the fossil fuel industry and other damaging trades, the commitments signal an intention to transition to a low-carbon future that also backs biodiversity restoration.
In his foreword to Terra Carta, Charles explained: “If we consider the legacy of our generation, more than 800 years ago, Magna Carta inspired a belief in the fundamental rights and liberties of people.
“As we strive to imagine the next 800 years of human progress, the fundamental rights and value of nature must represent a step-change in our ‘future of industry’ and ‘future of economy’ approach.”
Charles has previously said that people thought he was “completely dotty” when he started talking about environmental issues in the 1970s, but of course he has been proven correct in worrying about such issues.