The trip is centred around the second annual Earthshot Prize Awards Ceremony, which will take place in Boston, Massachusetts, on Friday 2 December. The organisation, founded by Prince William, honours and assists entrepreneurs who have come up with solutions to climate change and other environmental issues.
However, the awards ceremony on Friday evening is just one of several engagements and outings planned for the royal couple during their three-day trip to Boston, as Kate and William are expected to make a number of appearances in and around the city in the upcoming days. Their agenda will largely focus on climate issues and social change, with Karen Pierce, the British ambassador to the United States noting that the trip differs from a traditional royal tour because it is “much more focused on the work being done in climate change,” according to The New York Times.
On Wednesday, the couple, who last came to the US in 2014 for a visit to New York City, will begin their trip with a welcome engagement at Boston City Hall, where they will kick off Earthshot celebrations alongside Boston Mayor Michelle Wu and Ambassador Caroline Kennedy.
The engagement will see the couple, together with Mayor Wu and Ambassador Kennedy, assemble at Speaker’s Corner outside City Hall to light up Boston landmarks across the city green.
On Thursday, the prince and princess will visit Greentown Labs, a climate technology start-up incubator founded in 2011, in Somerville. During the visit, the royal couple is expected to speak with representatives from some of the start-ups within the Greentown Labs community to learn about their work in climate technology.
Later on in the day, the royal couple will visit Roca, a non-profit organisation in Chelsea that works with young people at the centre of urban violence to “address trauma, find hope and drive change”.
Ahead of the awards ceremony on Friday evening, the princess will visit The Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University. During the visit, Kate is expected to speak with researchers about advances in science that can ensure a promising future for every child.
Prince William will also embark on a solo outing Friday when he visits the John F Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, where he will meet with Ambassador Caroline Kennedy. During the visit, William will hear about President John F Kennedy’s Moonshot, which saw the US leader challenge the country to put a man on the moon, and which acted as a key inspiration behind the Earthshot Prize.
The main focus of the trip will be the Earthshot Prize Awards Ceremony on Friday evening, which will take place at MGM Music Hall at Fenway and which will see five entrepreneurs, chosen from 15 finalists, awarded $1.2m each to continue their work.
The winners will be chosen from five categories: the restoration and protection of nature; air cleanliness; ocean revival; waste-free living; and climate action.
The second annual Earthshot Prize Awards Ceremony is expected to be a star-studded affair, with the prince and princess joined by Sir David Attenborough, actors Rami Malek, Catherine O’Hara, Shailene Woodley and Daniel Dae Kim and British radio and TV personality Clara Amfo.
Although the couple’s trip has just begun, it comes as the royal family is facing criticism over controversial comments made by a longtime royal aide. On Wednesday, Lady Susan Hussey resigned from her role as a Lady of the Household after she made “unacceptable and deeply regrettable comments” to a Black advocate for domestic abuse.
As for whether the couple will see William’s brother Prince Harry and his sister-in-law Meghan Markle during the trip to the United States, it is not expected that the royal couples will reunite. However, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who currently reside in California, will make a trip of their own to the East Coast on 6 December to receive the Robert F Kennedy Ripple of Hope Award at a New York City gala.
After touching down in the United States on Wednesday, which marked the first time the couple has travelled overseas since the death of the Queen, William and Kate released a statement expressing their joy to be back, and their gratitude for the well-wishes they received following the monarch’s passing. “Catherine and I are delighted to be back in the United States and are extremely grateful to Governor Baker and The First Lady of Massachusetts for their warm welcome into Boston,” the statement read. “On this, our first overseas visit since the death of my grandmother, I would like to thank the people of Boston for their many tributes paid to the late Queen.”