18:58 GMT +318 October 2019
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    Prince Harry arrives at the ADAM Tower, in Amsterdam, on September 3, 2019, for the introduction of a project and global partnership between Booking.com, SkyScanner, CTrip, TripAdvisor and Visa, an initiative led by the Duke of Sussex to change the travel industry to better protect tourist destinations and communities that depend on it

    Twitter Backlash as Eco-Friendly Prince Harry Says He Needs Private Jets to Keep Family 'Safe'

    © AFP 2019 / FRANK VAN BEEK
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    The story about Duke and Duchess of Sussex who have been widely criticised by the public for their overreliance on private jets despite talking about environmental issues has a new chapter.

    Prince Harry argued that he "occasionally" took private jet flights to ensure the safety of his family, while speaking about the launch of his new environmental initiative 'Travalyst' in A'dam Tower in Amsterdam on Tuesday, 3 August.

    "Occasionally, there needs to be an opportunity based on a unique circumstance to ensure that my family are safe. It's genuinely as simple as that," – said the Duke of Sussex, by adding that he "always" offset his CO2 emissions.

    The comments came as the Duke of Sussex addressed last month's controversy when he and his wife Meghan Markle were criticised for taking four private jets instead of commercial flights in 11 days while travelling to Ibiza and to Sir Elton John's home in Nice. The singer later argued that he provided Duke and Duchess of Sussex and their 4-month-old son Archie with the private plane to maintain "a high level of much-needed protection", by also adding that he made a financial contribution to ensure that the couple's flight was carbon neutral.

    Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019
    © AP Photo / Dominic Lipinski
    Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a photocall with their newborn son, in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England, Wednesday May 8, 2019

    Prince Harry used the opportunity to introduce his new 'Travalyst' initiative that was supposed to unite several global travel giants such as Booking.com, Skyscanner, TripAdvisor, VISA and others to make the global travel industry more sustainable and environmentally friendly. He argued that 'Travalyst' will serve for the protection of tourist destinations and local communities, but did not outline the specific steps the coalition would be about to take.

    "We could all do better, and while no one is perfect, we all have a responsibility for our own individual impact. The question is what we do to balance it all out," said Prince Harry during the introduction of the project, "so today, after two years of behind-the-scenes conversations and planning, we're going to start with the tourism industry."

    During Q&A session the Duke of Sussex also stated that he came to Amsterdam by commercial flight, as he spends "99 per cent of my life travelling the world by commercial", adding that he "balances out the impact" on the environment from carbon emissions and will continue to do so.
    The public generally found such a strong emphasis on environmental sustainability, while maintaining overreliance on private jets slightly hypocritical, with British broadcaster Piers Morgan arguing that the Duke of Sussex cannot do "both" and journalist Sonia Poulton saying that Prince Harry is not the best candidate to lecture everyone about the environment.

    ​Some users were also astonished by the fact that the grandson of Queen Elizabeth II used the safety of his family as an excuse to continue using private jets which generate a significant amount of carbon emissions which are released into the atmosphere.

    ​One netizen compared Prince Harry’s determination to tackle environmental issues with appeals from a teen-activist Greta Thunberg, who recently spent two weeks in a solar-powered boat while travelling to New York from Europe, amusingly enough, in order to avoid flying by plane.

    ​The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who got married in May 2019, were also recently mocked by British pro-Brexit politician Nigel Farage who argued that since meeting Meghan Markle Prince Harry has “fallen of a cliff” as the royal grandson declared his plan to have only two children in order to set an example amid global overpopulation.

    Tags:
    Elton John, private jet, Booking.com, Twitter, Amsterdam, Netherlands, Nigel Farage, UK, Meghan Markle, Prince Harry
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