ROYAL TRIP TO ISLAND
IT’S the “other” royal tour.
Prince Albert of Monaco, the billionaire royal known as the “Green Prince”, has quietly flown in to the Torres Strait on a global mission to protect the world’s coral reefs and ocean.
“We only have ‘One Ocean’,” he exclusively told the Cairns Post in an interview on Badu Island yesterday.
“I call it the ocean, as there is one, single global ocean that touches all our shores. Just like we only have one Earth.
“I’m looking for the inspiration to help people around the world respect the ocean and all marine creatures.”
Prince Albert uses his power to connect world leaders, the super-rich and celebrities in the fight to save our seas.
He’s one of the most influential figures in marine conservation and heartily welcomed the international coverage of Prince Harry’s visit and comments about treasuring our iconic natural jewels.
“Harry is a very engaging guy and a very outgoing personality,” Prince Albert said.
“Like us, he wants to help ‘reconnect humanity with the sea’. We cannot survive if we don’t have healthy ecosystems and a healthy ocean.”
Prince Albert II, who comes from European and Hollywood royalty (mum Princess Grace was the famous actress) is custodian of the legacy of ancestor Prince Albert I, the “Explorer Prince” who began a series of voyages in 1885.
“My great, great grandfather Prince Albert I used to say that art and science are the two driving forces of mankind.
“With scientists, we study the ocean, to continue monitoring its condition to see how we can better protect it.
“I wanted to spend time with people who live with the ocean, from the ocean, and who care about the ocean.”
Badu Island is one of hundreds of coral atolls in the turquoise waters between Cape York and Papua New Guinea.
The three-day trip came about from a meeting two years ago with Badu artist and dancer Alick Tipoti at Monaco’s Oceanographic Institute.
Mr Tipoti said the royal visit was “surreal”.
“We’ve never had a royal visit before. He has helped put us on the map,” he said.
Prince Albert visits Townsville tomorrow for a conference as part of Monaco’s new role co-chairing the International Coral Reef Initiative.
SEA CARERS: Prince Albert and Alick Tipoti on Badu Island.
HEAD MEN: Prince Albert and dancers on Badu Island.
ROYALTY: Prince Albert II at his formal investiture as the new ruler of Monaco in 2005.
FAMILY: Prince Albert II and his wife Princess Charlene.