Leonardo DiCaprio Announces He's Donating $15 Million To An Underfunded Cause

mbg Sustainability Editor By Emma Loewe
mbg Sustainability Editor
Emma Loewe is the Sustainability Editor at mindbodygreen and the author of "The Spirit Almanac: A Modern Guide To Ancient Self Care."

Photo by Getty Images

Just as we're starting to cross our fingers that he finally snags his overdue Oscar, Leonardo DiCaprio gives us another reason to cheer him on.

During a speech at the World Economic Forum yesterday, the actor announced that his charity will be donating $15 million to environmental causes.

This includes grants to the Rainforest Action Network to preserve natural habitats abroad, the Solutions Project to conduct alternative energy research, and the Global Fishing Watch to reduce overfishing in the world's oceans.

"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 told global leaders in attendance at the Forum — a three-day business summit held in Geneva, Switzerland — that investing in climate change reduction strategies makes economic sense and using renewable technology to fill the world's total energy demand could save nearly $42 trillion in global energy costs and create 20 million new jobs.

This isn't the first time Leo has used his fame as a platform for implementing reform. Since its founding in 1998, his namesake foundation has pledged over $30 million to 65 organizations across various environmental sectors.

His career has brought him face to face with the destructive forces of global warming — what he considers the "most existential human crisis the world has even known." Filming of his most recent Oscar contender, The Revenant, was often put on hold due to extreme weather events across the globe. The crew was even forced to travel to the South Pole to shoot one of the outdoor flick's snow scenes.

Here's hoping DiCaprio continues to steer the conversation away from the box office and towards what really matters: the state of our planet.

"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."

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