Even without his dad, Irwin, his mom, and his sister have dedicated their lives to conservation and carrying on Steve Irwin's legacy through the Australia Zoo and their foundations.
Robert Irwin has been carrying on with his father's legacy in every way possible, and it's something everyone's appreciated him for. The latest celebrity to jump on that bandwagon and point it out is none other than Prince William!
The Duke of Cambridge was being interviewed by Robert Irwin about his upcoming Earthshot Prize, and the royal made sure to shower the Animal Planet star with nothing but kind words. "Honestly, I was a big fan of your dad [Steve Irwin] and I am so sorry," said Prince William, 39, in a conversation shared exclusively with PEOPLE. "It's no surprise that you're a fan of crocodiles as well. The family trait has continued into the next generation I am sure."
Prince William continued, "He'd be very proud of you Robert. And what you continued. Your passion is only second to his." Even without his dad, Irwin, his mom, and his sister have dedicated their lives to conservation and carrying on Steve Irwin's legacy through the Australia Zoo and their foundations. "I'm really glad that I get to hopefully inspire my generation and my fellow younger Australians to ignite and start that spark of passion," says Robert.
Irwin, who is also an Earthshot advocate, asked William what inspired him to start the non-profit which hosted its first-ever awards ceremony in London on October 17, 2021.
"I felt that a bit of optimism and hope is what we needed," said Prince William of the global environment prize, which he designed to incentivize change and help repair our planet over the next 10 years. "Showing people that there are solutions. That there is a way forward what was going to be needed, and so that's how the Earthshot Prize sort of spun out from there."
Not only will the upcoming ceremony feature performances by Ed Sheeran, Shawn Mendes, and Coldplay— whose performance outside Alexandra Palace will be powered by 60 cyclists, it will also announce five inaugural winners of the Earthshot Prize, along with celebrating the ingenuity of all 15 Earthshot Prize finalists and their work to tackle the challenges posed by climate change and the threats to our oceans, air, and land.
On the day of the awards, Prince William looked dapper in a green velvet suit, as he was accompanied by his wife, Kate Middleton. He then gave a message of optimism for "all the young people watching tonight," reports PEOPLE. "For too long, we haven't done enough to protect the planet for your future. The Earthshot is for you. In the next ten years, we are going to act, we are going to find the solutions to repair our planet," he shared. "Please keep learning, keep demanding change, and don't give up hope. We will rise to these challenges."
During the event, Kate Middleton also spoke, talking about how "Nature is vital to us all."
"A thriving natural world regulates our climate, nurtures our physical and mental health, and helps feed our families,' the mother-of-three said. "But for too long, we've neglected our wild spaces and now we're facing a number of tipping points. If we don't act now, we will permanently destabilize our planet and we will rob our children of the future they deserve." Kate added.
The Earthshot Prize is "designed to incentivize change and help to repair our planet over the next ten years."
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photos By | (L) Yui Mok (R) Mark Metcalfe