Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation’s Annual Gala to Fund Climate and Biodiversity Projects

Climate
Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation’s Annual Gala to Fund Climate and Biodiversity Projects
Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation

The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation announced today its third annual gala at the Domaine Bertaud Belieu vineyard in St. Tropez, France on July 20.

The major charity event raises funds to protect Earth's last wild place, implement solutions that restore balance to threatened ecosystems and ensure the long-term health and wellbeing of all its inhabitants.

Last year's gala at Domaine Bertaud Belieu on July 22, 2015 in Saint-Tropez, France raised $40 million for environmental causes.The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation

This year's occasion will be co-hosted by the Oscar-winning actor and noted environmentalist Leonardo DiCaprio, the foundation's global chair Milutin Gatsby and chief executive officer Terry Tamminen.

Event chairs include Hollywood A-listers, environmentalists and prominent businessmen and women such as Cate Blanchett, Marion Cotillard, Boris Collardi, Philippe Cousteau, Jr., Penelope Cruz, Robert De Niro, Jonah Hill, Kate Hudson, Scarlett Johansson, Tobey Maguire, Edward Norton, Caroline Scheufele, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Kevin Spacey and Charlize Theron.

This year's event will honor H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco for his legacy of environmental conservation and include performances by The Weeknd, Lana Del Rey and special guest Andrea Bocelli.

DiCaprio's eponymous foundation was founded in 1998 and works in four key areas: protecting biodiversity, oceans conservation, wildlands conservations and climate change. The organization supports more than 70 environmental projects across 40-plus countries and five oceans through close collaborative partnerships with environmental leaders, experts and organizations.

For instance, the philanthropic organization has donated more than $6.2 million to the World Wildlife Fund since 2010 to help boost the global population of wild tigers. The foundation also supports local partners in Sumatra to establish "a mega-fauna sanctuary in the Leuser Ecosystem," which is known as the last place on Earth where Sumatran orangutans, tigers, rhinos and elephants coexist in the wild, and is under threat from industrial development of palm oil. Without protection, these wildlife species are likely to be pushed to extinction.

Last year's star-studded gala raised a staggering $40 million, nearly doubling the $25 million raised in the first year. The 2015 event featured a high-priced live auction that opened with DiCaprio's personal items up for bid: a Rolex Daytona Cosmograph watch, and Andy Warhol and Bansky artworks from his personal collection. DiCaprio's donations raised close to $2 million.

"Tonight's event is about supporting Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation's efforts to protect key species like the tiger, rhino, shark and mountain gorilla by working with governments to conserve the jungles, coral reefs and forests they call home," DiCaprio said in his opening speech at last year's soirée.

"By focusing on protecting these critically-endangered iconic species is almost like setting up a worldwide network of Noahs arks. We've decimated our forests, wildlands, polluted and over fished our rivers and oceans; all the key ecosystems that not only serve as a home to our planet's biodiversity, but also make life here for us possible. I'm incredibly proud to be part of a night that will allow us to do so much to protect the planet."

The Revenant star and his foundation have advocated for a number of worthy causes to help preserve our environment. Last month, following the April signing of the Paris agreement, the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation announced a $650,000 grant to R20 Regions of Climate Action, a project that aims to rapidly identify renewable energy, energy efficiency and waste management initiatives to bring positive environmental and social benefits to communities across the globe and ultimately reduce carbon emissions.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

7 Things You Should Do After Watching 'How to Let Go of the World'

Boyan Slat's Ocean Cleanup Project Launches Historic First Prototype at Sea

Drought Kills 66 Million Trees in California, Increasing Risk of Catastrophic Wildfires

It's Not Just Crimes Against Nature, It's Crimes Against People

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

This image of the Santa Monica Mountains in California shows how a north-facing slope (left) can be covered in white-blooming hoaryleaf ceanothus (Ceanothus crassifolius), while the south-facing slope (right) is much less sparsely covered in a completely different plant. Noah Elhardt / Wikimedia Commons / CC by 2.5

By Mark Mancini

If weather is your mood, climate is your personality. That's an analogy some scientists use to help explain the difference between two words people often get mixed up.

Read More Show Less
Flames from the Lake Fire burn on a hillside near a fire truck and other vehicles on Aug. 12, 2020 in Lake Hughes, California. Mario Tama / Getty Images

An "explosive" wildfire ignited in Los Angeles county Wednesday, growing to 10,000 acres in a little less than three hours.

Read More Show Less
Although heat waves rarely get the attention that hurricanes do, they kill far more people per year in the U.S. and abroad. greenaperture / Getty Images

By Jeff Berardelli

Note: This story was originally published on August 6, 2020

If asked to recall a hurricane, odds are you'd immediately invoke memorable names like Sandy, Katrina or Harvey. You'd probably even remember something specific about the impact of the storm. But if asked to recall a heat wave, a vague recollection that it was hot during your last summer vacation may be about as specific as you can get.

Read More Show Less

A film by Felix Nuhr.

Thailand has a total population of 5,000 elephants. But of that number, 3,000 live in captivity, carrying tourists on their backs and offering photo opportunities made for social media.

Read More Show Less
Scientists have found a way to use bricks as batteries, meaning that buildings may one day be used to store and generate power. Public Domain Pictures

One of the challenges of renewable power is how to store clean energy from the sun, wind and geothermal sources. Now, a new study and advances in nanotechnology have found a method that may relieve the burden on supercapacitor storage. This method turns bricks into batteries, meaning that buildings themselves may one day be used to store and generate power, Science Times reported.

Bricks are a preferred building tool for their durability and resilience against heat and frost since they do not shrink, expand or warp in a way that compromises infrastructure. They are also reusable. What was unknown, until now, is that they can be altered to store electrical energy, according to a new study published in Nature Communications.

The scientists behind the study figured out a way to modify bricks in order to use their iconic red hue, which comes from hematite, an iron oxide, to store enough electricity to power devices, Gizmodo reported. To do that, the researchers filled bricks' pores with a nanofiber made from a conducting plastic that can store an electrical charge.

The first bricks they modified stored enough of a charge to power a small light. They can be charged in just 13 minutes and hold 10,000 charges, but the challenge is getting them to hold a much larger charge, making the technology a distant proposition.

If the capacity can be increased, researchers believe bricks can be used as a cheap alternative to lithium ion batteries — the same batteries used in laptops, phones and tablets.

The first power bricks are only one percent of a lithium-ion battery, but storage capacity can be increased tenfold by adding materials like metal oxides, Julio D'Arcy, a researcher at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, who contributed to the paper and was part of the research team, told The Guardian. But only when the storage capacity is scaled up would bricks become commercially viable.

"A solar cell on the roof of your house has to store electricity somewhere and typically we use batteries," D'Arcy told The Guardian. "What we have done is provide a new 'food-for-thought' option, but we're not there yet.

"If [that can happen], this technology is way cheaper than lithium ion batteries," D'Arcy added. "It would be a different world and you would not hear the words 'lithium ion battery' again."

Aerial view of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Gamboa, Panama, where a new soil study was held, on Sept. 11, 2019. LUIS ACOSTA / AFP via Getty Images

One of the concerns about a warming planet is the feedback loop that will emerge. That is, as the planet warms, it will melt permafrost, which will release trapped carbon and lead to more warming and more melting. Now, a new study has shown that the feedback loop won't only happen in the nether regions of the north and south, but in the tropics as well, according to a new paper in Nature.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods speaks during a press conference after a shooting at Forest High School on April 20, 2018 in Ocala, Florida. Gerardo Mora / Getty Images

By Jessica Corbett

A sheriff in Florida is under fire for deciding Tuesday to ban his deputies from wearing face masks while on the job—ignoring the advice of public health experts about the safety measures that everyone should take during the coronavirus pandemic as well as the rising Covid-19 death toll in his county and state.

Read More Show Less