LEONARDO DiCaprio has pledged $5million towards combating the Amazon rainforest fires to protect the lungs of the planet.
The Hollywood heavyweight made the announcement through his environmental foundation Earth Alliance on Sunday.
The Amazon fires have ravaged the region which is responsible for 20 per cent of the world’s oxygen[/caption]
DiCaprio, together with philanthropists Laurene Powell Jobs and Brian Sheth, set up the The Amazon Forest Fund to save the forests from being ravaged by out of control wildfires.
The Fund will provide financial aid to local partners and indigenous communities in their work to protect the Amazon.
A statement on Earth Alliance’s website explained: “The Amazon rainforest is on fire, with more than 9,000 wildfires scorching delicate, irreplaceable landscapes across Brazil this week.
“Earth Alliance has formed an emergency Amazon Forest Fund with an initial commitment of $5million to focus critical resources on the key protections needed to maintain the lungs of the planet.
“These funds will be distributed directly to local partners and the indigenous communities protecting the Amazon, the incredible diversity of wildlife that lives there, and the health of the planet overall.”
The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation raised more than $100 million in the fight against climate change last year.
The 44-year-old actor has publicly campaigned for raising awareness of climate change over recent years.
DiCaprio wrote on the foundation’s website: “When I founded LDF 20 years ago, I did so based on the simple idea that we could make a real difference by directly funding some of the most effective environmental projects.”
Meanwhile, Brazil’s President has blasted G7 leaders for treating his country like a “colony” over their moves to help save the burning Amazon rain forest.
Jair Bolsonaro questioned the intentions behind French President Emmanuel Macron’s bid to garner support for an aid plan at the summit.
International leaders later agreed to provide logistical and financial support to help tackle the raging fires in the the world’s largest rain forest.
Mr Macron revealed G7 countries will now release £18m – during a crunch meeting noticeably missed by Donald Trump.
However, Mr Bolsonaro said Mr Macron’s plan of an “alliance” to “save” the Amazon treated Brazil “as if we were a colony or no man’s land”.
A record number of fires are now burning in Brazil – mostly in the Amazon – according to the country’s space research agency.
The funding pledge was made as the leaders of the G7 – Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the US – met in Biarritz, France.
Mr Macron said the funds would be made available “immediately” – mainly to pay for extra firefighting planes.
Brazil president Jair Bolsonaro questioned the real intentions behind the G7 cash[/caption]
Macron announced the pledge for cash at a meeting missed by Donald Trump[/caption]
He then added that France would also “offer concrete support with military in the region within the next few hours”.
However, Mr Bolsonaro accused the French leader of launching “unreasonable and gratuitous attacks against the Amazon region.”
He then accused the French leader of “hiding his intentions behind the idea of an alliance of G7 countries”.
When Mr Trump was asked whether he attended the meeting on climate change which discussed the Amazon crisis he replied “We’re having it in a little while.”
He did not appear to hear when one reporter then pointed out to him that it had already taken place.
News of the G7 cash pledge came as Leonardo DiCaprio donated more than £4m in help to the Amazon rain forest.
A Hercules C-130 plane from Brazil’s Air Force dropping water to fight the fire at the Amazon forest[/caption]
Fury is mounting across the world over the shocking destruction of the world’s largest tropical rain forest[/caption]
The 44-year-old actor has pledged the money through his environmental foundation, Earth Alliance, which he created with philanthropists Laurene Powell Jobs and Brian Sheth.
Earlier we reported how Hercules warplanes are now being used to dump thousands of gallons of water onto more than 9,000 wild fires in the Amazon.
The emergency move comes amid mounting fury over the shocking ongoing destruction of the planet’s largest tropical rain forest.
Bolsonaro ordered the sudden military intervention to combat multiple blazes now raging out of control.
A video posted by the country’s defence ministry later showed a military plane raining water down onto fires below.
Around 44,000 troops are now on alert and some troops are already heading to six Brazilian states that asked for help.
The states affected by the massive blazes are Roraima, Rondonia, Tocantins, Para, Acre and Mato Grosso.
The military’s first mission will be carried out by 700 troops around the city of Porto Velho, capital of Rondonia.
The military is using two C-130 Hercules aircraft capable of dumping up to 12,000 liters (3,170 gallons) of water onto the fires.
The Brazilian military operations came after widespread criticism of Bolsonaro’s handling of the environmental crisis.
He has long described the protection of the rain forest as an obstacle to Brazil’s economic development.
The Amazon fires have become a global issue escalating tensions between Brazil and European countries who believe Bolsonaro has neglected commitments to protect biodiversity.
Protesters gathered outside Brazilian diplomatic missions in European and Latin American cities Friday, and demonstrators also marched in Brazil.
‘The planet’s lungs are on fire. Let’s save them! ‘ read a sign at a protest outside Brazil’s embassy in Mexico City.
MOST READ IN NEWS
John Lewis security guard puts dad in a choke hold as he shops for baby clothes
HOUSE ABOUT THAT
Three-bed detached house goes on sale for just £5k – but there's a catch
Hero off-duty pilot helps land Jet2 plane after captain 'faints in cockpit'
'with her babies'
Mum whose 4 kids died in petrol bomb attack dies in hospital 20 months on
WALL OF FLAMES
Hundreds evacuated from Greek hotels and beaches as wildfires rage
Woman's body found in cemetery as cops search for missing mum-of-two
The dispute also spilled over into the economic arena when French leader Emmanuel Macron threatened to block a EU trade deal with Brazil on the back of the blazes.
“First we need to help Brazil and other countries put out these fires,” he said at the weekend.
The goal is to “preserve this forest that we all need because it is a treasure of our biodiversity and our climate thanks to the oxygen that it emits and thanks to the carbon it absorbs,” he said.
A video released by the defence ministry showed a military plane raining water down onto the fires below[/caption]
Around 44,000 troops are now on alert to tackle blazes in six emergency-hit Brazilian states[/caption]
We pay for your stories! Do you have a story for The Sun Online news team? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 782 4368 . You can WhatsApp us on 07810 791 502. We pay for videos too. Click here to upload yours.