Charles warns of 'dual challenges'
The Prince of Wales has described how the world faces the challenges of an economic system with enormous shortcomings, and an environmental crisis that threatens us all.
His words of warning came yesterday at the end of his four-day tour of America when he gave a speech on health and the environment following a symposium in Louisville, Kentucky.
Earlier that day the heir to the throne was praised as "the greatest" by Louisville's most famous son, renowned boxer Muhammad Ali.
The sport superstar's words came in a letter - not in person - as he was not well enough to join leading figures from the city at a cultural greeting for Charles and Camilla.
At the Kentucky Centre for African American Heritage - a stone's throw from Ali's childhood home - Louisville's Mayor Greg Fischer read Ali's words: "(My wife) Lonnie and I welcome you to our hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, USA.
"We are honoured that you have come to explore, share and learn about new sustainable initiatives that are so close to your heart.''
The former boxer added: "As you travel back to your homeland, we hope you know how much this city respects and admires the many contributions you have made in the world.
"We think you are the greatest.''
Later, speaking at the Cathedral of the Assumption, Charles told the invited audience: "We are standing at a moment of substantial transition where we face the dual challenges of a world view and an economic system that seem to have enormous shortcomings, together with an environmental crisis - including that of climate change - which threatens to engulf us all."
He added: "Our ability to adapt to the effects of climate change, and then perhaps even to reduce those effects, depends upon us adapting our pursuit of 'unlimited' economic growth to that of 'sustainable' economic growth.
"And that depends upon basing our approach on the fundamental resilience of our ecosystems. Ecosystem resilience leads to economic resilience.
"If we carry on destroying our marine and forest ecosystems as we are doing, then we will rob them of their natural resilience and so end up destroying our own."
On Thursday the heir to the throne was presented with the exceptional leadership in conservation honour, from the International Conservation Caucus Foundation during a ceremony in Washington.
It recognised how Charles has been highlighting his environmental concerns for decades and during that time has set up a number of bodies to help find solutions to rainforest deforestation and over-fishing of fish stocks, while he is now tackling a new issue of the dumping of plastics in the world's waters.