Earlier this month, Leonardo DiCaprio had more pressing issues on his mind, than an Oscar nod. For during a speech at the World Economic Forum, the actor announced his plans to donate $15 million to help fund environmental causes.
The grants will be dispersed amongst charities such as Rainforest Action Network, Global Fishing Watch and Solutions Project all of which contribute to the betterment of our environment through alternative energy and preservation of natural habitats.
“Currently, less than 3% of all philanthropic giving goes to defending our planet,” DiCaprio said. “Again 3% of all philanthropic giving goes towards the protection of our ONLY home, planet earth.”
He urged the audience members, made up of global leaders, to invest in climate change reduction strategies by utilising renewable energy – a move that could save nearly $42 trillion in global energy costs and create 20 million new jobs.
His charity, the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, has previously raised over $30 million dollars to fight climate change and other environmental issues.
In a previous speech at the Mayors summit in Paris, Leo spoke about his first-hand experience bearing witness to the impacts of climate change.
“As the U.N. Messenger of Peace, as a concerned citizen, and for my upcoming climate documentary, I have traveled to places like the Arctic, the Antarctic, Greenland, where scientists were astonished to find once solid impermeable ancient glaciers rapidly melting away. In Canada I have seen the devastation left behind in the wake of energy giants who have leveled large tracks of the great Boreal forest in an insatiable quest for tar sands oil. In India, I met with farmers in a village outside of New Dehli whose crops and livelihoods had been destroyed by unprecedented flooding. One thing has become fundamentally clear. That the world’s most poor and under-privileged are the first to feel the devastating effects of climate change.”
The star of the upcoming action thriller The Revenant pleaded with world leaders to take heed of his message, calling for immediate action to limit the “most existential human crisis the world has even known.”
“The challenge before us requires each and every one of us to take action,” DiCaprio concluded yesterday’s speech. “We owe this to ourselves, but more importantly to the future generations who are counting on us.”
“We simply cannot allow the corporate greed of the coal, oil and gas industries to determine the future of humanity.”
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