Leonardo DiCaprio has announced that he is donating $7 million towards marine conservation efforts.
Speaking at the State Department “Our Ocean” conference in Washington, D.C. on June 17, the philanthropic actor warned the audience of the devastation that is taking place in our oceans as a direct result of human influences.
“It’s the Wild West on the high seas,” Leo said. “These last remaining underwater bio gems are being destroyed because there isn’t proper enforcement or sufficient cooperation among governments to protect them.”
An avid diver, the 39-year-old Wolf of Wall Street star described how he had witnessed the destruction of the Great Barrier reefs firsthand over the past 20 years. He also revealed that before he was an actor, he once dreamed of becoming a marine biologist.
“We’re plundering the ocean and its vital resources, and just because we can’t see the devastation from dry land doesn’t mean it’s any less dangerous,” he said. “It needs to stop.”
Read more: Leonardo DiCaprio's 10 best movie roles
Wildlife-loving Leo has been a champion for the blue parts of our planet for many years. Through his Leonardo DiCaprio foundation, the actor gave a $3-million grant to Oceana – a non–profit that focuses solely on ocean conservation efforts – this past February.
“If we don’t do something to save our oceans now, it won’t be just the sharks and the dolphins that will suffer; it will be all of us including our children and our grandchildren,” the Hollywood star added.