The Royal Family Living Green

by Lauren Verini

There is something about the royal family that Americans just love. Many of us tuned in to watch Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding, and we love to hear about Prince Harry’s latest adventures. Luckily, we can all learn a thing or two from the royal family across the pond because of their dedication to living a green lifestyle. Prince Charles has expressed that environmental issues are even more important now that he has a grandchild on the way.

Prince Charles is a long time environmental activist supporting issues like organic farming and eco-friendly homes, all the while taking steps to reduce his carbon footprint. In the early 1980’s, Prince Charles moved to the Highgrove Estate and converted the Duchy Home Farm to an organic farm. He had a vision to produce high quality foods that were created in harmony with the environment, and in 1990 Duchy Originals was launched. All profits from the line go to The Prince’s Charities Foundation, a group of charities with a focus on education, business and of course sustainability.

In 2011 Prince Charles presented an eco-friendly home at the Ideal Home Show and it was so well received, he built one of the homes, The Princes Natural House, for people to walk through at the Building Research Establishment (BRE). This building project was started as an example of how people can live in an eco-friendly home on a budget and featured natural materials bought locally, home décor made with recycled materials and incorporated natural ventilation.

While he has been on the worst dressed list a few times, he does encourage everyone to wear sustainable clothing. He believes that the current trends in cheap, throw away clothing is wassteful and there has to be a better answer. Prince Charles’ solution? Wool! Wool is natural and renewable, biodegradable, it retains warmth and is durable. Prince Charles started The Wool Project as a collaboration between sheep farmers, manufacturers, retailers, designers and consumers to help educate people on wool’s many benefits.

In 2011, Prince William followed in his father’s foot steps by marrying Kate Middleton with a green wedding. From seasonal and locally grown flowers to wedding invitations on recycled paper and sustainably sourced and organic fair, Prince William and Kate pulled out all the stops. For gifts, Will and Kate asked their guests to donate to their charitable fund, supporting 26 charities including Earthwatch’s global volunteer work and conservation efforts for the Zoological Society of London to save animals in danger of going extinct.

For more information about Prince William’s charities you can visit his website, and stay tuned to see what Prince William and Kate’s next steps in environmental activism will be.

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