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Leonardo DiCaprio Pledges to Divest from Fossil Fuels

Actor an environmental activist Leonardo DiCaprio has pledged to divest from his fossil fuel holdings and increase his investment in renewable energy companies, an environmental group announced Tuesday.

DiCaprio attended a meeting of the Divest-Invest Coalition in New York City Tuesday, where he pledged to end his personal and his Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation’s investments in the fossil fuel sector.

“Climate change is severely impacting the health of our planet and all of its inhabitants, and we must transition to a clean energy economy that does not rely on fossil fuels, the main driver of this global problem.” the Departed actor said in a statement.

After looking into the growing movement to divest from fossil fuels and invest in climate solutions, I was convinced to make the pledge on behalf of myself and the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. Now is the time to divest and invest to let our world leaders know that we, as individuals and institutions, are taking action to address climate change, and we expect them to do their part this December in Paris at the U.N. climate talks.

According to the organization, more than 400 institutions and 2,000 individuals have pledged to divest fossil fuel holdings ahead of the planned UN climate change gathering in Paris later this year. The organization claims the value of divestments accrued already tops $2.6 trillion.

Divest-Invest also touted other organizations that have made the pledge, including California’s Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS), the University of California system, the Canadian Medical Association, the Norway Pension Fund, the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, and the World Council of Churches.

“If these numbers tell us anything, it’s that the divestment movement is catching fire,” 350.org executive director Mary Boeve said in a statement. “Since starting on the campuses of a few colleges in the U.S., this movement has struck a chord with people across the world who care about climate change, and convinced some of the largest and most influential institutions in the world to begin pulling their money out of climate destruction. That makes me hopeful for our future, and it’s sending a clear message to world leaders as they head into Paris: It’s time for them to follow suit, and divest our governments from fossil fuel companies too.”

DiCaprio has been a staunch environmental activist for years; the actor’s foundation, founded in 1998, raises money to protect threatened ecosystems and conduct conservation efforts worldwide. In April, DiCaprio announced plans to build a luxury eco-resort on a private island off the coast of Belize as part of an effort to restore the island’s natural balance after years of overfishing and deforestation. Just this week, the actor was added to the lineup of the Global Citizen Festival in New York, an annual gathering on climate change and global inequality in the city’s Central Park.

It is unclear whether DiCaprio’s pledge includes ending air travel by private jet; internal Sony documents obtained by WikiLeaks in April revealed that the actor allegedly used a private jet to travel cross-country six times over a six-week period last year.

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