The world lost an important environmental icon on Monday with the passing of Paul G. Allen. He died from complications of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in Seattle, according to his company Vulcan Inc. He was 65.
Allen, who co-founded Microsoft with his childhood friend Bill Gates and owned the Seattle Seahawks and Portland Trail Blazers, was also a major philanthropist devoted to making the world a better place.
In 1986, Allen founded the Seattle-based project and investment firm Vulcan Inc. to help oversee many philanthropic initiatives, which include conservation, preserving ocean health, transportation electrification and fighting climate change.
Actor Leonardo DiCaprio paid tribute to his fellow environmentalist on Monday.
"Sad to hear of the passing of Paul Allen, who was a strong advocate for environmental protection," DiCaprio tweeted. "He and the team at Vulcan played a pivotal role in developing the Shark Conservation Fund alongside [the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation]. His legacy lives on via his incredible work as a philanthropist and investor."
Sad to hear of the passing of Paul Allen, who was a strong advocate for environmental protection. He and the team a… https://t.co/vMVNQTeKgs— Leonardo DiCaprio (@Leonardo DiCaprio)1539650114.0
His Global FinPrint initiative was introduced in 2015 to assess the planet's diminishing number of sharks and rays and to aid management and conservation efforts for marine life.
Captain Paul Watson, the founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, said Allen was a "great force for marine conservation" and noted that Vulcan co-produced their 2018 high-seas documentary Chasing The Thunder.
In 1997, Allen launched Vulcan Productions, an independent film production company.
Sadly Paul Allen died today at the young age of 65. Paul was a great force for marine conservation. His company… https://t.co/OVTfwIP6NZ— Captain Paul Watson (@Captain Paul Watson)1539658891.0
Erik Solheim, head of the United Nations Environment Programme, also said Allen will be sorely missed but his legacy will continue.
"We will remember Paul Allen as a champion and supporter of wildlife, conservation and the environment," Solheim tweeted on Tuesday. "He and Vulcan Inc. were instrumental in hugely impactful work on everything from elephants to sharks."
We will remember Paul Allen as a champion and supporter of wildlife, conservation and the environment. He and… https://t.co/K5exT2B7xc— Erik Solheim (@Erik Solheim)1539694282.0
Allen's lifetime of philanthropic giving to science, technology, education, conservation, the arts and community improvement totaled more than $2 billion, according to the Allen Institute.
He was among the list of the world's leading philanthropists who pledged to give away the bulk of their fortunes to charity.
"Those fortunate to achieve great wealth should put it to work for the good of humanity," Allen wrote several years ago after announcing that he was donating most of his fortune to charity, the Associated Press reported.
The pledge "reminds us all that our net worth is ultimately defined not by dollars but rather by how well we serve others."
Vulcan CEO Bill Hilf said in a press release that "millions of people were touched by his generosity, his persistence in pursuit of a better world, and his drive to accomplish as much as he could with the time and resources at his disposal."
Allen, his team and his conservation partners helped launch the Great Elephant Census in 2013 to count Africa's savanna elephants.
"Our goal was to learn how many remain and where, then use the information to help protect these iconic animals from the poachers that are driving them toward extinction," Allen wrote in 2016.
The census showed that elephant populations in 18 countries declined by 30 percent.
Paul Allen's 'Great #Elephant Census' Shows Catastrophic Decline in Africa https://t.co/4F5irXSX86 @CenterForBioDiv @LeoDiCaprio @PaulGAllen— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1472734306.0
Earlier this month, Allen announced that the non-Hodgkin's lymphoma he battled in 2009 had returned and he planned to fight it.
"I've begun treatment and my doctors are optimistic that I will see a good result. Appreciate the support I've received and count on it as I fight this challenge," he tweeted.
Some personal news: Recently, I learned the non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma I battled in 2009 has returned. I’ve begun treat… https://t.co/5PTQa9y69C— Paul Allen (@Paul Allen)1538426879.0
Allen's family released the
"My brother was a remarkable individual on every level. While most knew Paul Allen as a technologist and philanthropist, for us he was a much loved brother and uncle, and an exceptional friend.
Paul's family and friends were blessed to experience his wit, warmth, his generosity and deep concern. For all the demands on his schedule, there was always time for family and friends. At this time of loss and grief for us—and so many others—we are profoundly grateful for the care and concern he demonstrated every day."
Thanks to dedicated conservation efforts, Nepal now has an estimated 235 wild tigers in the country, a nearly twofold increase from its baseline of 121 individuals in 2009, the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF) announced Sunday on the occasion of Nepal's National Conservation Day.
The South Asian nation is now on track to become the first country to double its tiger population as part of WWF's "TX2" goal to double the world's wild tiger population by 2022—the next year of the tiger on the Chinese zodiac.
The news was celebrated by environmentalists including actor Leonardo DiCaprio, who is a WWF-US board member. His foundation has funded tiger conservation in Nepal's Bardia National Park and elsewhere since 2010.
"This significant increase in Nepal's tiger population is proof that when we work together, we can save the planet's wildlife—even species facing extinction," DiCaprio stated in a press release received by EcoWatch. "Nepal has been a leader in efforts to double tigers within its own borders and serves as a model for conservation for all of Asia and the world. I am proud of my foundation's partnership with WWF to support Nepal and local communities in doubling the population of wild tigers."
I am proud of @dicapriofdn’s partnership with @World_Wildlife to support Nepal and local communities in doubling th… https://t.co/2Qs8iRqkoV— Leonardo DiCaprio (@Leonardo DiCaprio)1537731033.0
Due to years of illegal poaching and habitat loss, there are roughly 3,890 of the iconic big cats roaming the planet today, a dramatic decline from the 100,000 about a century ago, according to WWF. As top predators, they are crucial to the ecosystems they inhabit.
"Every tiger counts, for Nepal and for the world," WWF-Nepal's Ghana S. Gurung stated in a press release received by EcoWatch. "While Nepal is but a few tigers away from our goal to double tiger numbers by 2022, it also underscores the continued need to ensure protection, and improved and contiguous habitats for the long-term survival of the species."
Under the TX2 goal set at the 2010 St. Petersburg summit, all 13 tiger range countries—Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Russia, Thailand and Vietnam—pledged to increase the number of wild tigers in the world to more than 6,000 by 2022.
"With four more years to go, the TX2 goal of doubling tiger numbers globally can only be achieved if all the tiger range countries step up and commit to a similar level of [Nepal's] excellence," WWF said.
To estimate its tiger population, Nepal conducted surveys between November 2017 and April 2018 by using camera traps and other techniques. The last survey in 2013 counted 198 tigers.
Camera traps were used to survey Nepal's wild tiger numbers.DNPWC/WWF Nepal
Nepal's success story can be attributed to its political commitment towards tiger conservation. For one, Nepal was the first country to achieve global standards in managing tiger conservation areas, an accreditation scheme governed by the Conservation Assured Tiger Standards, according to WWF.
"Protecting tigers is a top priority of the government, and we are thankful for the able support of our partners, enforcement agencies, local communities and the international community for a common purpose," Bishwa Nath Oli, secretary of Nepal's Ministry of Forests and Environment, stated in the press release.
New Sightings of 'Putin's Tigers' Are Good News for Conservation in Russia https://t.co/kRv066FbyG @environmentca @ConservationOrg— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1517453405.0
Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.
The bright patterns and recognizable designs of Waterlust's activewear aren't just for show. In fact, they're meant to promote the conversation around sustainability and give back to the ocean science and conservation community.
Each design is paired with a research lab, nonprofit, or education organization that has high intellectual merit and the potential to move the needle in its respective field. For each product sold, Waterlust donates 10% of profits to these conservation partners.
Eye-Catching Designs Made from Recycled Plastic Bottles
waterlust.com / @abamabam
The company sells a range of eco-friendly items like leggings, rash guards, and board shorts that are made using recycled post-consumer plastic bottles. There are currently 16 causes represented by distinct marine-life patterns, from whale shark research and invasive lionfish removal to sockeye salmon monitoring and abalone restoration.
One such organization is Get Inspired, a nonprofit that specializes in ocean restoration and environmental education. Get Inspired founder, marine biologist Nancy Caruso, says supporting on-the-ground efforts is one thing that sets Waterlust apart, like their apparel line that supports Get Inspired abalone restoration programs.
"All of us [conservation partners] are doing something," Caruso said. "We're not putting up exhibits and talking about it — although that is important — we're in the field."
Waterlust not only helps its conservation partners financially so they can continue their important work. It also helps them get the word out about what they're doing, whether that's through social media spotlights, photo and video projects, or the informative note card that comes with each piece of apparel.
"They're doing their part for sure, pushing the information out across all of their channels, and I think that's what makes them so interesting," Caruso said.
And then there are the clothes, which speak for themselves.
Advocate Apparel to Start Conversations About Conservation
waterlust.com / @oceanraysphotography
Waterlust's concept of "advocate apparel" encourages people to see getting dressed every day as an opportunity to not only express their individuality and style, but also to advance the conversation around marine science. By infusing science into clothing, people can visually represent species and ecosystems in need of advocacy — something that, more often than not, leads to a teaching moment.
"When people wear Waterlust gear, it's just a matter of time before somebody asks them about the bright, funky designs," said Waterlust's CEO, Patrick Rynne. "That moment is incredibly special, because it creates an intimate opportunity for the wearer to share what they've learned with another."
The idea for the company came to Rynne when he was a Ph.D. student in marine science.
"I was surrounded by incredible people that were discovering fascinating things but noticed that often their work wasn't reaching the general public in creative and engaging ways," he said. "That seemed like a missed opportunity with big implications."
Waterlust initially focused on conventional media, like film and photography, to promote ocean science, but the team quickly realized engagement on social media didn't translate to action or even knowledge sharing offscreen.
Rynne also saw the "in one ear, out the other" issue in the classroom — if students didn't repeatedly engage with the topics they learned, they'd quickly forget them.
"We decided that if we truly wanted to achieve our goal of bringing science into people's lives and have it stick, it would need to be through a process that is frequently repeated, fun, and functional," Rynne said. "That's when we thought about clothing."
Support Marine Research and Sustainability in Style
To date, Waterlust has sold tens of thousands of pieces of apparel in over 100 countries, and the interactions its products have sparked have had clear implications for furthering science communication.
For Caruso alone, it's led to opportunities to share her abalone restoration methods with communities far and wide.
"It moves my small little world of what I'm doing here in Orange County, California, across the entire globe," she said. "That's one of the beautiful things about our partnership."
Check out all of the different eco-conscious apparel options available from Waterlust to help promote ocean conservation.
Melissa Smith is an avid writer, scuba diver, backpacker, and all-around outdoor enthusiast. She graduated from the University of Florida with degrees in journalism and sustainable studies. Before joining EcoWatch, Melissa worked as the managing editor of Scuba Diving magazine and the communications manager of The Ocean Agency, a non-profit that's featured in the Emmy award-winning documentary Chasing Coral.
By Mike Gaworecki
A team of biologists and computer scientists plan to map a global "safety net" for planet Earth.
The mapping effort, to be led by Washington, DC-based non-profit research organization RESOLVE together with Globaïa, an NGO based in Quebec, Canada, and Brazil's Universidade Federal de Viçosa, aims to identify the most critical terrestrial regions to protect as we work towards the goal of conserving 50 percent of the world's land area.
Scientists and conservationists have argued for years that setting aside at least half of the world's land mass as off-limits to human enterprise is necessary if we are to conserve our planet's biodiversity. Renowned biologist E.O. Wilson is, of course, one of the chief proponents of this conservation target, as detailed in his 2016 book Half-Earth: Our Planet's Fight for Life.
There was an overall decline of 58 percent in wildlife population sizes between the years 1970 and 2012, the World Wildlife Fund reported earlier this year in its annual Living Planet Report. If current trends continue, the group added, population abundance of amphibians, birds, fish, mammals and reptiles will have declined, on average, by some 67 percent by 2020.
It's not just flora and fauna species at risk if we don't find a way to preserve intact ecosystems, however. Mankind also relies on the services provided by nature, including clean water for drinking and crop irrigation, for instance, while the sequestration of massive amounts of carbon in the world's forests helps regulate the global climate cycle.
The "safety net" that RESOLVE and its partner institutions plan to map out will consist of a network of wildlife corridors that connect every protected area on Earth and link them up with other high-priority landscapes, as well, even those that are unprotected. These corridors are necessary for migratory species and wide-ranging species like big cats to thrive. They also provide a means for species to shift their ranges as temperatures continue to rise due to global warming and their current habitat becomes inhospitable.
Advances in computer modeling techniques have made it possible to examine all 125 million square kilometers of habitable land area on Earth and evaluate the importance of each square kilometer for preserving biodiversity and sustaining agricultural production, according to Eric Dinerstein, the scientist leading the mapping effort.
In order to map all of the planet's protected areas, key landscapes, and crucial wildlife corridors, Dinerstein and team plan to utilize 52 different data sets, on everything from biodiversity hotspots and species density to agricultural output and projections of future human development. They estimate that it will require thousands of hours of computer processing time to complete their study.
"Constructing a 'safety net' for the Earth's biota remained a dream until a few years ago when access to supercomputers and massive data storage allowed such an ambitious study to be carried out. This new map will offer a global view of how to reconnect the Earth's natural treasures," Dinerstein said in a statement. "It is just a starting point, and will continually evolve with new data and insights provided by scientists around the world."
The algorithms used by Dinerstein and team in the modeling done for their research will be released publicly so that other researchers can create a "safety net" map for regional, national and transnational contexts.
The mapping initiative was launched and funded by the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation (which also provides funding to Mongabay). A parallel effort to map a "safety net" for the world's oceans connecting marine protected areas that are vital to maintaining healthy fisheries and sequestering carbon will be launched next year.
We have quite a ways to go until we've protected 50 percent of planet Earth. The UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Center and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature released a report last year that found about 15 percent of the world's land area has been protected so far, while a little more than 10 percent of coastal and marine areas within national jurisdiction and just four percent of the global ocean are protected.
"Modern society has undervalued the vital role that nature plays in providing humanity with clean air and water, healthy food, and a stable climate—elements that are essential to sustaining life," Justin Winters, executive director of the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, said in a statement. "By creating a 'safety net' of protected and connected ecosystems around the planet we could avert a climate crisis and create a world where both nature and humanity co-exist and thrive."
Reposted with permission from our media associate Mongabay.
Animal agriculture is responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than the entire transportation sector, but eating a burger doesn't have to come with a side of guilt.
The company's staple Beyond Burger is made mostly from pea protein. Beet juice gives it a red meat-like color and allows it to "bleed" like a regular beef burger when cooked.
"Livestock production is a major contributor to carbon emissions," DiCaprio said in his investment announcement. "Shifting from animal meat to the plant-based meats developed by Beyond Meat is one of the most powerful measures someone can take to reduce their impact on our climate."
"The company's ability to create appealing, healthy meat directly from plants will go a long way in helping everyday consumers take action on climate change," he added.
"I am thrilled to officially welcome Leonardo DiCaprio to the Beyond Meat family," said Ethan Brown, the chief executive of Beyond Meat, in a statement. "His investment and role as an advocate reflects a shared vision that meat made directly from plants, like our Beyond Burger, has enormous benefits for human health, the climate, natural resources, and animal welfare."
"I look forward to continuing to collaborate as we bring delicious, satiating products to a rapidly increasing consumer base."
Beyond Meat has grown immensely since its founding in 2009. Its products can now be found in more than 11,000 stores nationwide, including Walmart, Target, Whole Foods, Kroger, Safeway, Publix and Sprouts as well as eight BurgerFi's locations and six TGI Fridays, Business Insider reported.
Other big-name investors of the Los Angeles-based startup include Bill Gates, Twitter co-founders Biz Stone and Evan Williams, the meat company Tyson Foods and the Humane Society. Dicaprio's exact investment amount was not disclosed.
DiCaprio, and his Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, has long put his philanthropic dollars towards environmental organizations and businesses that protect oceans, land and wildlife, as well as operations that work to fight against climate change. The foundation has offered more than $80 million for such causes since its founding in 1998.
Dicaprio's latest investment doesn't just make environmental sense, but a financial one too. The global market for alternative meats such as tofu, tempeh, textured vegetable protein, seitan, quorn and other plant based sources is forecasted to garner $5.2 billion by 2020.
Environmental activist and Oscar-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio announced that his foundation has awarded $20 million to more than 100 organizations supporting environmental causes.
This is the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation's (LDF) largest-ever portfolio of environmental grants to date. The organization has now offered more than $80 million in total direct financial impact since its founding in 1998.
"We are proud to support the work of over 100 organizations at home and abroad," DiCaprio said. "These grantees are active on the ground, protecting our oceans, forests and endangered species for future generations—and tackling the urgent, existential challenges of climate change."
The new grants cover six areas: climate change, wildlife and landscape conservation, marine life and ocean conservation, innovative solutions, indigenous rights and the California program.
"There exist today many proven technologies in renewable energy, clean transportation and sustainable agriculture, that we can begin to build a brighter future for all of us," he said. "Our challenge is to find new ways to power our lives, employ millions of people and turn every individual into an advocate for clean air and drinkable water. We must demand that politicians accept climate science and make bold commitments before it is too late."
As reported by Mashable, during DiCaprio's remarks at the conference, he called out the Trump administration for its refusal to acknowledge climate science, especially as a string of climate-related natural disasters tear across the country.
"We have watched as storms, wildfires, and droughts have worsened, and as extinctions have become increasingly frequent. And some of us have also listened as the scientific community sounded alarm bells about climate change as far back as the early 1990s," he said.
"Yet with all of this evidence—the independent scientific warnings, and the mounting economic price tag–there is still an astounding level of willful ignorance and inaction from the people who should be doing the most to protect us, and every other living thing on this planet."
DiCaprio also lamented Trump's controversial decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate agreement.
"We watched as this White House pulled us back from the Paris climate agreement, the landmark blueprint for containing global emissions and slowing the increase in global temperatures, and we listened as they said that the powerful forces of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma did not change the President's mind about climate change," he said.
"I still believe that the United States has the potential to lead the world on this issue. We can only hope that the president begins to see it too, before it is too late."
Watch DiCaprio's interview with the former Secretary of State below. DiCaprio appears at the 8-minute mark:
By Phineas Rueckert
The list of celebrities pitching in to help out the victims of Hurricane Harvey is growing.
And the most recent star to contribute to the relief effort is no stranger to helping out those in need.
Thursday morning, Leonardo DiCaprio pledged $1 million to the United Way Harvey Recovery Fund, Variety reported.
He joins a growing entourage of stars to donate to the victims of one of the worst storms to make landfall in the U.S. since Katrina, including Beyonce, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Ruby Rose, Rachael Ray, Ellen Degeneres, Fall Out Boy, Sandra Bullock, Kevin Hart, Dwayne Johnson, Kim Kardashian, Chris Brown, Nicki Minaj, DJ Khaled, T.I., Jack Antonoff, Chris Young, Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Lopez, Alex Rodriguez and Selena Gomez.
In response to DiCaprio's donation, United Way Worldwide president and CEO Brian Gallagher had high praise.
"Responding to Hurricane Harvey requires the best of all of us—and that's what this gift represents," he said.
Established Wednesday, the United Way Harvey Recovery Fund "will distribute 100 percent of donations for recovery in the affected areas, community by community, in the months and years ahead," according to a press release.
United Way, which is supported by nearly 3 million volunteers worldwide, is uniquely positioned to respond to Harvey. The organization has a network of 1,800 community offshoots around the world, 23 of which are located in the path of Hurricane Harvey.
It also has experience with long-term disaster relief. United Way responded to Hurricane Katrina in 2006 and flooding in India's Tamil Nadu region in 2015.
The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation is also no stranger to disaster relief. According to Business Insider, the foundation donated to victims of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the 2010 Haiti earthquake and Hurricane Sandy in 2012.
"We support efforts to build climate resilient communities and protect vulnerable wildlife and ecosystems across the planet, and have supported disaster relief and victim funds in the past," Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation CEO Terry Tamminen said. "We hope others will step up and support the United Way and other organizations."
Both organizations have their work cut out for them.
In the past several days, Harvey has gone from a Category 4 hurricane at landfall to a tropical storm that is still currently making its way across the U.S. southeast. Along the way, it dumped trillions of gallons of water on the fourth most populous U.S. city, Houston, displacing 30,000 and killing at least 30.
The long-term impacts of Hurricane Harvey are still to be determined.
It's been estimated that only one in six of the 800,000 occupied housing units in Houston have flood insurance, which could create an imminent housing crisis for the city's most vulnerable residents.
"Most people who lose homes or have them damaged in Harvey won't have money to replace or repair them," the Atlantic wrote.
Furthermore, the National Flood Insurance Program expires in September and is in danger of itself collapsing.
In the wake of a storm of this size, public health risks also abound, the Washington Post has reported.
This includes the incidence of West Nile Virus increasing in the long-term as mosquitos breed and multiply in the stagnant water; post-traumatic stress disorder and depression; and mold exposure that can exacerbate allergic reactions.
DiCaprio's donation to United Way should remind us that although disasters last just a few days or weeks, the long-term impacts can be just as bad, and sometimes worse. You can donate to the United Way Harvey Recovery Fund here.
Reposted with permission from our media associate Global Citizen.
Fish—which is loaded with protein, vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids—is among the healthiest foods on the planet, and that's not to mention that dining on fish has a smaller carbon footprint than red meat, pork and chicken.
But here's the catch: the world's increasing appetite for finned food has led to a devastating problem with nearly 90 percent of global fish stocks either fully fished or overfished, according a 2016 analysis from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. Meanwhile, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development forecasts a 17 percent rise in fish production by 2025.
Global Fish Stocks Depleted to 'Alarming' Levels - EcoWatch https://t.co/1u7aU47UJp @wwwfoecouk @GreenpeaceUK— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1468064410.0
In addition to depleting fish stocks, the long term sustainability of the ocean's resources is also threatened by acidification, warming waters, hypoxia, sea level rise, pollution and the overuse of marine resources.
That's why Oscar-winning actor and environmental activist Leonardo DiCaprio has gotten behind Boulder, Colorado-based seafood brand LoveTheWild that sells frozen seafood kits made with 100 percent farm-raised fish.
"Estimates show the earth's population approaching nine billion by 2050, putting tremendous pressure on our natural food resources," DiCaprio said in a statement. "Seafood is a primary source of protein for nearly a billion people—but climate change, acidification and over fishing are putting increased pressure on our oceans' natural stability."
"LoveTheWild's approach to sustainable, responsible aquaculture is promoting the development of a secure and environmentally-conscious solution to feeding our planet's growing population," he added.
When you bake up our #Catfish and #Cajun Cream Sauce, you'll have an utterly delicious meal FULL of #BoldFlavor.… https://t.co/T0tIF5IrLG— LoveTheWild (@LoveTheWild)1488934566.0
The Before the Flood filmmaker has made an investment in the brand and will also serve as an advisor. According to BizWest, DiCaprio and sustainable aquaculture investment fund Aqua-Spark round out a $3 million Series A funding announced in February, in which Aqua-Spark invested $2.5 million.
"The exploitation of our oceans has left many marine ecosystems on the brink of total collapse, which is hurting our ability to harvest our seas as a reliable food source as we have for thousands of years," DiCaprio continued. "LoveTheWild is empowering people to take action on this crisis in a very meaningful way."
Farmed seafood, or aquaculture, currently provides roughly half of all fish consumed globally. Experts tout it as a way to supply protein, nutrition and food security to a rapidly growing global population.
However, aquaculture operators in some countries, such as Chile's salmon industry, have been criticized for crowding fish into tight enclosures that breed disease and raising them on unnatural diets and antibiotics.
But as Tim Fitzgerald, a scientist and sustainable seafood expert at the Environmental Defense Fund, told the New York Times, farming practices are improving and some merchants set high standards for the fish they sell.
LoveTheWild, founded by Jacqueline Claudia and Christy Brouker in 2014, sells sustainable fish that's good for you and the oceans at the same time. The company said it selects its seafood from the "most well-managed farms in the world."
The line includes striped bass with roasted pepper almond sauce, barramundi with mango Sriracha chutney, catfish with Cajun creme and red trout with salsa verde. The kits are in retailers such as Whole Foods Market, Wegmans, Sprouts and Mom's.
"Our vision for LoveTheWild was inspired by our dedication to aquaculture, and we're very humbled that the quality of our products and integrity of our vision has attracted such a powerful group of supporters and investors," said Claudia, LoveTheWild CEO, in a statement.
"We are excited that Mr. DiCaprio, someone so dedicated to environmental activism, has partnered with LoveTheWild to help make it easy for consumers make an impact on the environment through something as simple as choosing the right thing for dinner. We have no doubt that the involvement of all of our investors will further bring to life our mission of making high-quality seafood exciting, easy, and accessible, while also helping to bring awareness to the potential for responsible aquaculture to play an important role in our food future."
DiCaprio, and his Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, has long put his philanthropic dollars towards environmental organizations and businesses that protect oceans, land and wildlife, as well as operations that work to fight against climate change.
Last year, the foundation awarded a total of $15.6 million in grants, including $7,631,508 for wildlife and habitat conservation; $2,525,000 for ocean conservation; $2,100,000 to protect indigenous rights; $2,085,000 to support innovative solutions to the world's problems; and $1,300,000 to combat climate change. With these grants, the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation has provided more than $59 million in support of many projects since 1998.
Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation Awards $15.6 Million in Largest-Ever Round of Environmental Grants - EcoWatch https://t.co/eooOARR9B8— Orangutan Outreach (@Orangutan Outreach)1468557105.0
Leonardo DiCaprio and Terry Tamminen, the CEO of the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation (LDF), met with Donald Trump and his advisors including daughter Ivanka Trump on Wednesday at Trump Tower in New York to discuss how green jobs can revitalize the economy.
"We presented the President-elect and his advisors with a framework—which LDF developed in consultation with leading voices in the fields of economics and environmentalism—that details how to unleash a major economic revival across the United States that is centered on investments in sustainable infrastructure," Tamminen said in a statement to EcoWatch. "Our conversation focused on how create millions of secure, American jobs in the construction and operation of commercial and residential clean, renewable energy generation."
Actor and environmental advocate Leonardo DiCaprio Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation
"These programs are attainable—and include energy efficiency upgrades that pay for themselves with savings, waste reduction projects that can turn every city into a source of new materials and fuels, and transportation projects that will support global trade while reducing traffic and air pollution and make America a leader in sustainable fuel and vehicle technologies," he added.
The meeting took place on the same day that Trump announced his controversial choice of Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt as head the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Trump's pick was met with unprecedented criticism by environmental and health organizations nationwide, who consider Pruitt a "puppet" of the fossil fuel industry. Pruitt, who believes the science behind climate change is unsettled and believes the EPA's regulations are a war on energy, has spearheaded numerous lawsuits against the Obama administration and the agency he will likely be heading.
Trump Picks Scott Pruitt, 'Puppet of the Fossil Fuel Industry,' to Head EPA https://t.co/qPkff6DtIS via @EcoWatch— EWG (@EWG)1481166611.0
Pruitt falls in line with Trump's other cabinet nominees who have close ties to Big Energy and deny the overwhelming scientific consensus that human activity is causing climate change. The commander in chief to-be is a notorious climate change denialist himself who has made plans to exit the Paris climate accord, revitalize the coal industry and axe many of President Obama's environmental initiatives, including the historic Clean Power Plan that reduces emissions from power plans.
Although the president-elect will not be able to completely nix Obama's Clean Power Plan, having Pruitt—an experienced legal officer—as EPA head can help "substantially weaken, delay or slowly dismantle them," as the New York Times noted.
But Tamminen, who served as Secretary of the California Environmental Protection Agency under Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, said Trump was receptive during their meeting and a follow-up will take place next month.
"Climate change is bigger than politics, and the disastrous effects on our planet and our civilization will continue regardless of what party holds majorities in Congress or occupies the White House," he said. "The President-elect expressed his desire for a follow up meeting in January, and we look forward to continuing the conversation with the incoming administration as we work to stop the dangerous march of climate change, while putting millions of people to work at the same time."
DiCaprio is a prominent environmental advocate who said in October during a sit-down with President Obama and climate scientist Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, that "If you do not believe in climate change you do not believe in facts or science or empirical truths, and therefore in my opinion, you should not be allowed to hold public office."
Well, we all know what happened on Nov. 8.
Perhaps DiCaprio is now using his clout to push the incoming administration towards a more sustainable economy. In one part of DiCaprio's climate change documentary Before the Flood, the Oscar-winning actor toured the Tesla gigafactory in Nevada with founder and CEO Elon Musk, who is also a big proponent of green jobs.
"If governments can set the rules in favor of sustainable energy, then we can get there really quickly," Musk told DiCaprio about transitioning the world to sustainable energy.
Trump recently said he had "an open mind" with regards to climate change science and policies although many environmentalists are skeptical.
#TrumpWatch: As Trump Waffles on Climate, What Should We Believe? https://t.co/R2tD6GmJJ4 @wattsupwiththat @WMOnews— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1481148911.0
Daughter Ivanka, however, is purportedly planning on using her new mantle to address climate change. Earlier this week, Trump and the future First Daughter met with former VP Al Gore at Trump Tower to discuss the topic.
Two Trumps and a Gore https://t.co/y6ePkelCsV @europeangreens @GreenPartyUS— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1481065514.0
"I had a lengthy and very productive session with the president-elect," Gore said after the meeting. "It was a sincere search for areas of common ground."
DiCaprio also reportedly gave the Trumps a copy of his climate change documentary at a recent meeting.
Third Annual Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation Gala Sets New Fundraising Record, Raised Nearly $45 million
This year's glittering gala raised nearly $45 million for environmental causes.Getty
Nearly $45 million was raised to support the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation's mission of preserving the environment and all of Earth's inhabitants.
The event also honored victims and survivors of the Bastille Day attack in Nice, France—a portion of the evening's proceeds went to GiveforFrance.org, with DiCaprio himself and a number of guests making personal donations, according to the organizers.
In a speech kicking off the evening, the
and prominent activist urged for solutions to the world's environmental challenges.
"While we are the first generation that has the technology, the scientific knowledge and the global will to build a truly sustainable economic future for all of humanity—we are the last generation that has a chance to stop climate change before it is too late," DiCaprio said.
"We are the last generation that has a chance to stop climate change before it is too late." — Leonardo DiCaprioGetty
DiCaprio listed several environmental conservation achievements from this past year, such as the signing of COP21 agreement in April, where the United Nations Messenger of Peace delivered a speech in front of world dignitaries imploring a shift towards renewable energy.
He also highlighted successful initiatives achieved by his foundation and their partners, including the first native tiger population increase in 100 years and the first moratorium on all new palm oil plantations in Indonesia, a cause that The Revenant star has been particularly involved.
The evening was hosted by DiCaprio as well his foundation's fundraising chairman Milutin Gatsby, CEO Terry Tamminen, executive director Justin Winters and with support of banking group Julius Baer and Swiss watch maker Chopard.
Event chairs included Boris F.J. Collardi, CEO of Julius Baer, Philippe Cousteau, Jonah Hill, Kate Hudson, Tobey Maguire, Edward Norton, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Caroline Scheufele, Kevin Spacey, Cate Blanchett, Marion Cotillard, Penelope Cruz, Robert De Niro, Scarlett Johansson and Charlize Theron.
The gala, of course, included a host of A-list attendees, including Bono, Chris Rock, Mariah Carey, Bradley Cooper and supermodels Naomi Campbell, Constance Jablonski, Joan Smalls, Doutzen Kroes and Lily Donaldson. The Weeknd and Lana Del Rey gave special performances.
H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco awarded with the foundation's first "New World Leadership Award," in recognition of his legacy of environmental conservation.
The soirée's signature silent and live auction featured a slew of unique experiences (my favorite: attending the U.S. Open's men's final with Leo!), luxury collectibles and memorabilia. DiCaprio's collection of fine art on the block included pieces from renowned artists Jeff Koons, Pablo Picasso, Urs Fischer, Olafur Eliasson and Adrian Villar Rojas.
GQ gave a hilarious breakdown of auction's offerings:
The items range from the practical to the insane. For example, you could bid on DiCaprio's Rolex, his diamond cufflinks he wore when he won his Oscar, various pieces of expensive fine art (like the ones in DiCaprio's storied collection), and "A Unique Pair of Luminous Jellyfish Earrings." That last one is a little less Leo, but it is just the right amount of decadent.
You can also go for the Leonardo DiCaprio experience, including a week on set with Martin Scorsese (will he let you call him Marty?), a private game of Texas Hold 'Em with Edward Norton and Jonah Hill, an evening with Mariah Carey, and lunch with Margot Robbie. All for the price of a few years at an Ivy League, but think about it. What better education is there than paying celebrities to hang out with you? That's what I thought. There are also some weirder offerings like a portrait of Leo's eyeball. If you're going to get a portrait of an eyeball, why not have it be Leo DiCaprio's eyeball? It's a good eyeball.
That said, the money raised is going towards worthy causes. The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, founded in 1998, has given away more than $59 million to fund environmental projects across the globe. The foundation announced last week $15.6 million in grants, the largest portfolio of environmental grants in the foundation's history, to organizations that are working to preserve and protect the future of the planet. These grants further the foundation's approach to helping tackle some of today's most pressing environmental issues.
@LeoDiCaprio Foundation invests $2,100,000 to protect indigenous rights support Indigenous-led conservation movement https://t.co/89ymLD2v4h— Indigenous Waters (@Indigenous Waters)1468721358.0
"The destruction of our planet continues at a pace we can no longer afford to ignore," DiCaprio said. "I am proud to support these organizations who are working to solve humankind's greatest challenge."
In a historic announcement, the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation (LDF) awarded the largest portfolio of environmental grants in the foundation's history.
The foundation awarded a total of $15.6 million in grants, including $7,631,508 for wildlife and habitat conservation; $2,525,000 for ocean conservation; $2,100,000 to protect indigenous rights; $2,085,000 to support innovative solutions to the world's problems; and $1,300,000 to combat climate change. With these grants, the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation has provided more than $59 million in support of many projects since 1998.
The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation supports more than 70 environmental projects across 40-plus countries and five oceans through close collaborative partnerships with environmental leaders, experts and organizations.
"Today we are greatly increasing our level of vital grant making and strategic partnerships to help solve some of the world's most pressing environmental challenges," Leonardo DiCaprio, founder and chairman, said.
The foundation also announced today the appointment of Terry Tamminen as CEO of LDF. Tamminen joins the foundation from Seventh Generation Advisors, which he founded nine years ago. Previously, he served as Sec. of the California Environmental Protection Agency under Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and founded the Los Angeles Waterkeeper as the Santa Monica Bay Keeper in 1993.
"Leo and his foundation have been an invaluable voice in the environmental movement for many years," said Tamminen. "I am proud to join them in the fight for the defense of our natural world and the protection of every living creature on Earth. I look forward to working with Leo and the LDF team as we expand the impact of the foundation in the years to come."
LDF supports more than 70 environmental projects across 40-plus countries and five oceans through close collaborative partnerships with environmental leaders, experts and organizations.
The portfolio objectives and grant recipients for this round of funding include:
Wildlife and Habitat Protection aims to improve the future for vulnerable wildlife on land by protecting and restoring natural habitats, end poaching in critical regions and reintroduce native species back into the wild.
- Elephant Crisis Fund
- Lion Recovery Fund
- Mkomazi Rhino Sanctuary
- Maasai Wilderness Conservation Fund
- Turtle Conservancy
- California Mountain Lion Conservation
- World Wildlife Fund
- Pacific Wolf Coalition
- Defenders of Wildlife
- International Fund for Animal Welfare
Ocean Conservation works to safeguard endangered ocean habitats and species, constrain overfishing and establish and expand marine protected areas.
"On behalf of Utah Dine Bikeyah, I am honored to accept the support of LDF to continue advancing our mission of healing people and the Earth through preservation of Native American natural and cultural resources," Willie Grayeyes, chairman of the Utah Diné Bikéyah, said.
"News of LDF's support comes at a critical moment in the Bears Ears National Monument campaign, an inter-tribal initiative calling on President Obama to protect two million acres of ancestral homelands in southeastern Utah, considered sacred by numerous regional Tribes."
Innovative Solutions supports innovation at the grassroots level that can be replicated and amplified to bring about new pathways for change.
- Digital Democracy
- Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund
- Waterkeeper Alliance
- Water Defense
- Biomimicry Institute
- Earthecho International
- People's Grocery
"This important grant will help Our Children's Trust advance the global climate campaign in which more and more young people around the globe are exercising their fundamental constitutional and public trust rights to demand urgent reductions in carbon and methane pollution to stabilize our climate system and protect our oceans," Julia Olson, Our Children's Trust's executive director and chief legal counsel, said.
"Where political branches of governments have failed us, these youth are bringing landmark actions in their state and federal courts to secure the legally binding right to a healthy atmosphere and stable climate, in accordance with current science, for the benefit of all present and future generations."
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.
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