The Prince of Wales has described Cop26 as “amazing” and said the UN climate conference produced “quite a lot of success” as he retraced Christ’s footsteps in Jordan.
His comments came as he went on a walking tour, with the Duchess of Cornwall of Umm Qais, the site of the ancient city of Gadara which dates back to the 3rd century BC.
The city is a major tourist attraction for Jordan and said to be the place where Jesus carried out the “miracle of the Gadarene swine” – freeing a man “possessed by the devil” by casting his demons into pigs, according to the apostle Mark.
Perched on an imposing hilltop, the ancient settlement allowed the couple to view the Jordan Valley and the Sea of Galilee.
They were joined by Jordan’s Princess Dana Firas, a global advocate for heritage protection, who quizzed the prince about Cop26, which some commentators believe did not go far enough in attempting to tackle rising global temperatures.
When the princess asked about the UN climate change conference Charles attended in Glasgow, he replied it was: “Amazing. Quite a lot of success, I think.”
The prince gave one of the opening addresses at the environmental summit held earlier in November and has been urging world leaders to take action to avert the worst effects of rising global temperatures.
Charles also spoke about Cop26 in an interview with Sky News, saying: “Always the difficulty I think in these exercises is how do you translate commitments into real action? So often in the past, it has been a problem.
“But this time, the problem is we cannot go on mucking about any longer because the urgency, as I was trying to say, is so great.”
The prince also spoke about the pressing need for action to help countries such as Jordan, where he is on the second day of a visit to the region.
“In this part of the world they’re so challenged on water issues and everything else,” he said. “It’s water, food and energy [which are] critical areas here, as they are in many areas.
“So what we’re trying to do is look at how you can create the regional scale: more countries together, providing real opportunities for the big investments. Not just in technology, but in nature-based solutions.
“There are an awful lot of very ingenious ideas now, which could be brought to fruition.”
During their walking tour, the couple posed for a picture in Umm Qais with its impressive colonnaded street in the background and also saw the settlement’s surviving vaulted terrace, and the ruins of two theatres.
At one point the prince commented on the autumn sunshine, saying “it’s very hot”, as he and the duchess, both keen walkers, strode through the ruins.
Princess Dana highlighted the Hellenic, Roman, Byzantine and early Muslim history of the site, and during the visit Charles planted a tree to symbolise the UK-Jordanian partnership and in celebration of the centenary anniversary of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.