SINGAPORE: On Nov 5, around 5:30 pm, Britain’s Prince William arrived in Singapore, generating excitement as he prepared for the groundbreaking Earthshot Prize Awards Ceremony, marking its first-ever appearance in Asia, as reported by The Straits Times.

At Jewel Changi Airport, well-wishers welcomed Prince William with cheers, and he was delighted to engage with the crowd, taking photos and shaking hands with Singaporeans.

Upon his arrival, Prince William said, “It’s fantastic to be back in Singapore for this year’s Earthshot Prize ceremony after eleven years. Singapore’s bold vision to be a leader for environmental innovation sets the standard for others to follow.”

During his visit to Jewel Changi Airport, Prince William explored its renowned attractions, including the HSBC Rain Vortex, the world’s largest indoor waterfall. As he toured the Rain Vortex, he was accompanied by Ms Sim Ann, Senior Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and National Development, and he remarked, “It’s enormous.”

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Crowds gathered to catch a glimpse of the royal visitor, with some presenting him with gifts. Notably, author David Seow shared photos of Diana, Princess of Wales, Prince William’s late mother, taken in London in 1992. The visit to Jewel was also marked by the planting of a tembusu tree, which the chief executive of Jewel, James Fong, showed as an honour reserved for the Prince’s visit.

Earthshot Prize Awards Ceremony

Prince William’s visit to Singapore is primarily to preside over the Earthshot Prize Awards Ceremony. According to Associate Press, this global environmental award, established in 2020, will see five winners receive £1 million (S$1.7 million) each for their innovative solutions in environmental categories like:

  • nature protection
  • clean air
  • ocean revival
  • waste elimination
  • climate change

The ceremony, to be held at the Theatre at Mediacorp, will feature co-hosts American actor Sterling K. Brown and English actress Hannah Waddingham. Additionally, Grammy-nominated artist Bebe Rexha will perform, along with American band OneRepublic and British indie-pop band Bastille. Announcing the winners will be Australian actress and Earthshot Prize council member Cate Blanchett, Australian wildlife conservationist Robert Irwin, South African actress Nomzamo Mbatha, Romcom actress from ‘To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before,’ Lana Condor, and Hong Kong actor Donnie Yen.

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Prince William’s schedule in Singapore involves meetings with President Tharman Shanmugaratnam and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at The Istana. He will also engage in local culture by participating in dragon boating and observing local initiatives for environmental protection and restoration.

In addition to the Earthshot Prize Awards Ceremony, Prince William will participate in the United for Wildlife summit. This event unites representatives from law enforcement agencies, conservation groups, and corporations to combat the illegal wildlife trade, estimated to be a $20 billion annual enterprise.

Singapore was chosen to host the Earthshot Prize Awards Ceremony due to its reputation as a hub for innovation in Southeast Asia. The Prince’s visit underscores his commitment to promoting environmental innovation and addressing global environmental challenges, acting as a catalyst for change and a symbol of leadership in environmental conservation.

The Earthshot Prize, founded by Prince William and his Royal Foundation in 2020, aims to promote innovative solutions and technologies to mitigate the impact of global warming on the environment. /TISG