Future grandchild for Prince Charles sparks new green plea

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Media captionPrince Charles on becoming a grandfather: "I am feeling very old" (Interview clip courtesy: 'This Morning, ITV1, ITV Studios')

The Prince of Wales has said he does not want to hand on an "increasingly dysfunctional" environmental situation to his grandchild, due in the summer.

Princes Charles told ITV1's This Morning programme he did not want the child to wonder why past generations did not act to protect the environment.

He said he did not want to leave a "total poisoned chalice" to future children.

The prince has long been an outspoken campaigner on environmental issues.

'Poisoned chalice'

In a recording from Clarence House, the prince said he remains concerned about climate change and possible long-term environmental damage.

He told the programme: "We don't, in a sensible world, want to hand on an increasingly dysfunctional world to our grandchildren, to leave them with the real problem.

"I don't want to be confronted by my future grandchild and [have] them say: 'Why didn't you do something?'

"So clearly now that we will have a grandchild, it makes it even more obvious to try and make sure we leave them something that isn't a total poisoned chalice."

In December the prince told reporters he was "thrilled" at the prospect of becoming a grandfather for the first time.

St James' Palace announced Catherine's pregnancy after she was admitted to the King Edward VII's hospital in central London suffering from acute morning sickness.

The duchess spent three days in hospital before being discharged.

'Incredibly dangerous'

Prince Charles has long been a high-profile environmental advocate and in 2007 set up The Prince's Rainforest Group to find a solution to save the world's threatened forests.

Last June he addressed the Rio+20 UN sustainability conference, and in February 2011 he warned MEPs in Brussels that ignoring environmental concerns could damage economic growth.

During the interview, Prince Charles also spoke of his concern for his other son, Prince Harry, who is currently serving in Afghanistan.

"If you are a parent or relation to a loved one and that person is away in these incredibly dangerous and challenging circumstances, I know you worry all the time.

"Certainly every night I worry. But he loves doing what he's doing and he's brilliant at it," the prince said.

The programme featuring the prince's interview will be broadcast on ITV1 from 10:30 GMT on Monday.

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