Why Prince William remains a 'stubborn optimist' despite 'crisis'

Prince William has opened up about how he still has hope when it comes to a ‘crisis’ he’s passionate about

Prince William, Prince of Wales reacts as he visits Reach Up Youth
(Image credit: Photo by Cameron Smith/Getty Images)

Prince William’s “stubborn” optimism has been revisited after an older interview has resurfaced online. William talks about still having “hope” when it comes to working together to fix the climate crisis, dubbing it a “team game” and crediting his grandfather, Prince Philip, and father, King Charles, for kickstarting his passion for environmentalism and nature.

The official Instagram account for Prince William’s Earthshot Prize has reshared an older clip where the Prince of Wales talks about being a “stubborn optimist” – and fans are loving this side of William.

William sat down with Tar actress Cate Blanchett and clean technology expert Danny Kennedy for their podcast, Climate of Change, in 2022.

The trio discuss numerous topics, but a clip shared on the Earthshot account captures Prince William’s hopeful spirit as he declares himself a “stubborn optimist” when it comes to tackling environmental issues, and hailing the “game-changing nature” of his Earthshot Prize.

When Cate said the Prince appeared “quite hopeful” that we may be able to “work our way out of what seems to be a crisis”, William replied by quoting Christiana Figuerres, chair of Earthshot's trustees, saying he felt like a “stubborn optimist.”

“(Christiana) has given me a lot of hope that this can happen and I believe it, and I'm seeing it with my own eyes,” he said. “It's really inspiring, it's really hopeful and I do believe we can make huge strides.”

Fans online are touched by William’s display of positivity and unity in approaching such a worldwide problem.

One commented, “This is true leadership”, while another added, “Love that it's all of us in it together. So utterly humble and caring and pure hearted to see that, know that, and feel that. In the end, ultimately it is so utterly truthful.”

And he seems to be inspiring a new movement, as many comments echoed the sentiment shared by a fan who wrote, “#stubbornoptimist - me too now!!! I love that phrase.”

Prince William has spearheaded the Earthshot Prize, celebrating and encouraging solutions to climate concerns

(Image credit: Getty Images)

William’s optimism for the environment can be traced back to a few figures.

When Cate probed the Prince on his earliest memories of nature, he credits his grandfather, Prince Philip, father, King Charles, and documentarian David Attenborough.

William recalls being encouraged to “explore” and be “out in the garden… climbing trees, digging ditches” by Philip and Charles, while he was fascinated by David Attenborough’s legendary TV shows.

Prince William credits Sir David Attenborough as one of the men who inspired his love for the environment

(Image credit: Getty Images)

However, the major spark that catapulted the environment to the top of his list when it comes to passions and concerns was something that connected him with Prince Harry and Princess Diana – and that’s a bond to Africa.

“Spending time in Kenya” was one of William’s most profound wake-up calls when it came to experiencing the power of nature, and the need to protect it.

Princess Diana took many high profile trips to Africa, inspiring her sons to follow suit

(Image credit: Getty Images)

William spent his gap year – time between school and university – working and exploring Kenya. And his brother, Prince Harry, is a known lover of the continent, having referred to it as his “lifeline” and a place where he has “found peace and healing time and time again.”

Their mother, Princess Diana, also took many trips to Africa – her most famous being when she walked a minefield in Angola, calling on countries to work together to rid the world of the deadly weaponry.

Jack Slater
Freelance writer

Jack Slater is not the Last Action Hero, but that's what comes up first when you Google him. Preferring a much more sedentary life, Jack gets his thrills by covering news, entertainment, celebrity, film and culture for woman&home, and other digital publications.

Having written for various print and online publications—ranging from national syndicates to niche magazines—Jack has written about nearly everything there is to write about, covering LGBTQ+ news, celebrity features, TV and film scoops, reviewing the latest theatre shows lighting up London’s West End and the most pressing of SEO based stories.