While the Amazon continues to be consumed by flames, an organization backed by Leonardo DiCaprio has just committed a huge amount of money to assist authorities in fighting the many fires currently burning in the forest which has been nicknamed “the world’s lungs.”
The organization, known as The Earth Alliance, has donated $5 million to the fire effort, which will go to five local organizations directly related to combating the collective blaze.
Those organizations include: Instituto Associacao Floresta Protegida (Kayapo), Coordination of the Indigenous Organizations of the Brazilian Amazon (COIAB), Instituto Kabu (Kayapo), Instituto Raoni (Kayapo) as well as Instituto Socioambiental (ISA).
The alliance was started in July and stands to address the alarming loss of biodiversity threatening the stability of life on earth. The organization is led by DiCaprio along billionaire business investors and philanthropists, Laurene Powell Jobs and Brian Sheth.
Taking to Instagram the week before last, the star is not just throwing money at the organization, but sharing how everyone else can help too.
“The lungs of the Earth are in flames,” his post began.
“The Brazilian Amazon – home to 1 million Indigenous people and 3 million species – has been burning for more than two weeks straight.”
“There have been 74,000 fires in the Brazilian Amazon since the beginning of this year – a staggering 84% increase over the same period last year (National Institute for Space Research, Brazil.)”
“Scientists and conservationists attribute the accelerating deforestation to President Jair Bolsonaro, who issued an open invitation to loggers and farmers to clear the land after taking office in January. The largest rainforest in the world is a critical piece of the global climate solution.”
“Without the Amazon, we cannot keep the Earth’s warming in check. The Amazon needs more than our prayers.”
The post continues on, suggesting a few ways in which we all can do our part to protect the Amazon, asking the question: “So what can YOU do?”
“As an emergency response, donate to front line Amazon groups working to defend the forest.”
“Consider becoming a regular supporter of the Rainforest Alliance’s community forestry initiatives across the world’s most vulnerable tropical forests, including the Amazon; this approach is by far the most effective [defense] against deforestation and natural forest fires, but it requires deep, long-term collaboration between the communities and the public and private sectors.”
“Stay on top of this story and keep sharing posts, tagging news agencies and influencers.”
“Be a conscious consumer, taking care to support companies committed to responsible supply chains. Eliminate or reduce consumption of beef; cattle ranching is one of the primary drivers of Amazon deforestation.”
“When election time comes, VOTE for leaders who understand the urgency of our climate crisis and are willing to take bold action – including strong governance and forward-thinking policy.”
Currently, there have been over 72,000 fires in the Amazon this year alone — a number that has yet to be recorded.
You can do your part in pressuring the Australian government into making a choice that addresses climate change, here.