William Shatner hits back as Prince William slams ‘space tourism’

STAR Trek’s William Shatner has hit back after Prince William slammed ‘space tourism’ following the actor’s flight to the far reaches of space.

The 90-year-old became the oldest astronaut ever on October 13 – the same day the Duke of Cambridge urged “the greatest minds in the world” to focus on “fixing this planet, not trying to find the next place to live”.

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Prince William has urged those locked into the billionaire space race to ‘fix the planet first’Credit: PA
Star Trek actor William Shatner made history as oldest astronaut ever

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Star Trek actor William Shatner made history as oldest astronaut everCredit: The Mega Agency

But Captain Kirk actor Shatner today said the Duke had ‘had the wrong idea’ and his trip was actually the first of many ‘small steps’ to help move polluters off Earth .

He said entertainment tonight: “He is a lovely Englishman. He will one day be King of England.

“He’s a lovely, sweet, educated man, but he has a bad idea.”

Instead of finding an alternate home for humans, Shatner said his space travel was actually about protecting planet Earth.

“The idea here is not to say, ‘Yeah, look at me. I’m in space,'” he said.

“The landing that consumed all that energy and people to look over and say, ‘Oh, look at that.’ No.

“I hope the prince gets the message, it’s a small step in bringing industry up there, so all these polluting industries, especially, for example, industries that produce electricity, out of the Earth.”

Shatner wants to see energy companies build bases above the earth to preserve the planet.

He said: “We have all the technology, the rockets, to get things over there.

“You can build a base 250 or 280 miles above Earth and send that power here, and they grab it, and then they use it, and it’s there.

“All it takes is someone as rich as Jeff Bezos [to say]’Let’s go up there’.”

Shatner added: “The prince misses the point. The thing is, it’s the baby steps to show people [that] it’s very useful. You can send someone like me into space.”

His comments are in response to William speaking out against billionaires like Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk and Richard Branson who are locked in a bitter space race.

The trio have been roundly criticized, including by the United Nations, for being extremely hostile to the environment.

“THE PRINCE MISSES THE POINT”

Without naming them directly, William said in a BBC newscast about the new space race: “We need some of the greatest brains and minds in the world who are determined to try to fix this planet, not to find the next place to live.

“It’s really crucial to focus on that [planet] rather than giving up and heading off into space to try to figure out solutions for the future.”

Hollywood star Shatner made history aboard Bezos’ Blue Origin rocket, saying, “Everyone in the world needs to see this.”

It flew 66.5 miles above Earth’s atmosphere during the 11-minute trip.

The actor was part of a four-person crew that left the earth’s surface to launch into low Earth orbit around 11 a.m.

Bezos was there to greet passengers on the ground.

“Hello, astronauts. Welcome to Earth!” he exclaimed.

“THE DAWN OF A NEW SPACE AGE”

Bezos reportedly made over $100 million selling tickets to board his rocket.

The capsule, dubbed the ‘New Shepard’ after first astronaut Alan Shepard, was built with human spaceflight in mind, allowing Shatner and other passengers to be strapped into harnesses but avoid wearing helmets. .

The world’s rich and famous are lining up to buy flight amid a new billionaire space race.

Virgin Galactic took Richard Branson 86 miles into the sky two months ago before Jeff Bezos did the same.

Branson said, “We’re here to make space more accessible to everyone. Welcome to the dawn of a new space age.

Companies such as Musk’s SpaceX, Virgin Galactic and Space Adventures want to make space tourism more mainstream.

Critics called it a “useless billionaire space race”, a “conceited project” and not a test of the world’s superpowers but “just the ego of three billionaires”.

Launch of the New Shepard rocket on October 13

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Launch of the New Shepard rocket on October 13Credit: AFP
Shatner experiences weightlessness during space mission

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Shatner experiences weightlessness during space missionCredit: Reuters
Prince William blasts billionaire space tourism ahead of his Earthshot prize this Sunday, doling out millions to save the planet

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