How King Charles Is Making Royal Residencies More Eco-Friendly

The United Kingdom is no stranger to environmental concerns. The Industrial Revolution began in the 18th century, leading to manufacturing complexes emitting dangerous fumes with toxic particles. Such particles in the air leads to smog. Smog became an issue as early as the start of the 19th century. Then, just months before Queen Elizabeth II's stunning coronation, cold weather in London trapped smoke from coal burning and led to what historians call the Great Smog of 1952.

The air quality has never reached such dire conditions since the Great Smog, but the United Kingdom has continued to struggle with environmental concerns. Scientists around the world continue to spread their message that lower energy consumption (mainly fossil fuels) on all scales helps cut down on pollution. King Charles III wants to spread this message as well, and has started with the man in the mirror — or at least the man in the palace.

King Charles wants to minimize his energy consumption

According to the Independent, Prince Harry once stated that King Charles III is a "stickler for turning the lights off." The king has also lowered the temperature in the heated pool at Buckingham Palace. At Clarence House, the king and queen's home near Buckingham Palace, the king added solar panels. He even repurposes bath and waste water for his gardens. All of these are measures to minimize the energy consumption of the royal residences. However, the king's efforts reflect financial awareness as well as environmental. Taxes from the British public literally keep the lights on at Buckingham Palace.

King Charles III also has organic farms at his Sandringham home in Norfolk, meaning that he aims to farm with as little antibiotics as possible. Many were skeptical of his organic methods when he first discussed them over four decades ago, but now there is more awareness of the fact that farming organically allows soil to keep its fertility and biodiversity.

King Charles III has advocated for the environment for decades

King Charles III has long prioritized environmental issues. He first brought up the topic in a speech way back in 1970. At the COP26 climate summit in 2021, the king poignantly stated, "Time has quite literally run out" when referring to the world's efforts (or lack thereof) against climate change. The king even goes as far as to make his carbon footprint available to the public every year, though it is difficult to keep it low due to his frequent travel obligations.

As the king likely knows, much more work needs to be done for the world to become more eco-friendly. Pollution continues to cause premature deaths in the United Kingdom. However, efforts to improve the environment are not hopeless. The Zoological Society of London reported a slight upward trends in the biodiversity in the city's Thames River thanks to better sewage practices. The society does not want the change to stop here, but rather remain cautious regarding climate change.