From your Royal Correspondent (hopefully on the penultimate occasion)
There has been a little speculation that King Charles may maintain his ‘activism’ as King. That he took an interest in the environment is not in doubt, although what difference he made definitely is. I thought I would query what steps are being taken to lessen the climate damage of the massive jamboree that will take place tomorrow. What, I asked Google will be the carbon and/or climate change cost of the state funeral of the Queen? It was one of those rare occasions when Google had no answer. It seems nobody has at least posted on the subject, never mind quantified it. Apart from the fact that some world leaders will be bussed to Westminster Abbey rather than going in their limos, there will be no attention given to the enormous carbon emissions delivered by the whole business. And the use of buses will have no origin in climate concerns, but is being done merely to get the world’s elite into the Abbey a shade faster.
Prince Charles (as then was) may have had an input into the arrangements for the funeral, which we have been repeatedly told have evolved over years. Perhaps it would be a good idea for an MP to put down a parliamentary question on the subject. Except it would be disallowed. MPs cannot ask about or comment on the Royals in the House of Commons. That’s handy. It’s all part of the unwritten UK constitution which allows the Royals carte blanche as long as they don’t themselves appear to get involved in ‘politics.’ But there’s the rub. There’s hardly a less political family in the land. Their political role is to legitimise conspicuous wealth and consumption, to be a bastion against equality, and to ensure that perhaps most importantly of all, on the environmental front nothing really changes. To truly address the environmental crisis, no-one would argue, that e.g. they had to have five or six palaces, or a fleet of CO2 emitting cars and planes at their disposal (thank god ‘Air Miles’ Andy has been grounded). As long as we keep the royals the message goes out: climate destroying wealth is OK. It will be interesting to see how many Gulf state ‘royals’ get good seats in Westminster Abbey tomorrow. At least it seems Mohammed Bin Salman of Saudi Arabia has fallen prey to his blushes and will not now be attending.
So, are we to get a ‘green king?’ There’s a very good article in Heated ( Stop calling Charles the "climate king" - by Emily Atkin (heated.world) which delves into the question. The answer is ‘no.’ Charles is about perpetuating current political compromises, in other words he is just a blue-blooded exponent of the greenwash that swills around the establishment like a bucket of Thames Water sewage. I thought it would be interesting to see how the UK’s most radical mainstream environmental party, the Greens approached the subject. The news section of their website said:
The Green Party of England and Wales has expressed sincere condolences to the entire Royal Family following the extremely sad news of the death of Queen Elizabeth II. Co-leader Adrian Ramsay said: “This is a moment of great sadness for our nation. "The Queen served this country tirelessly over her 70-year reign, bearing witness to the fall of the Berlin Wall, invention of the internet and the first man on the moon. "We send strength and compassion to the Royal family at this difficult time.”
And that’s it. We’re all stuffed.
N.B. Didn’t we all ‘bear witness’ to those things, if not necessarily in that order? Didn’t the Queen also bear witness to CO2 emissions passing the 400ppmv mark too? Doesn’t that count?