As wildfires rage at an alarming rate in Brazil’s Amazon rain forest, celebrities are using their platforms to bring awareness to the deforestation’s impact and to call for action.
In the past week, stars like Leonardo DiCaprio, Madonna, Cara Delevingne and Ariana Grande have taken to Instagram to express their frustration with the lack of media coverage and the need for awareness, using the hashtag #PrayForAmazonia.
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According to the New York Times, the National Institute for Space Research reported a 77% increase in wildfires from last year in the world’s largest rain forest. Deforestation has become an increasingly pressing concern in the Amazon, and after Brazil’s president Jair Bolsonaro took office in January, funding to protect the rain forests has been cut.
In an Instagram post on Thursday, DiCaprio said, “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.” He also suggested donating to “frontline Amazon groups working to defend the forest,” among other recommendations.
#Regram #RG @rainforestalliance: The lungs of the Earth are in flames. 🔥 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. So what can YOU do? ✔ As an emergency response, donate to frontline 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. #RainforestAlliance #SaveTheAmazon #PrayForAmazonia #AmazonRainforest #ActOnClimate #ForestsResist #ClimateCrisis 📸: @mohsinkazmitakespictures / Windy.com
A post shared by Leonardo DiCaprio (@leonardodicaprio) on Aug 22, 2019 at 7:12am PDT
Delevingne also shared her sentiments on Instagram, advocating for more media coverage and urging her followers to increase awareness through the hashtag #PrayForAmazonia.
A post shared by Cara Delevingne (@caradelevingne) on Aug 20, 2019 at 4:13pm PDT
Grande took to her Instagram Stories, sharing three photos of the rainforest ablaze, saying “If ur not from Brazil, and dont have no clue about what’s happening here, here it goes. The largest rainforest on the world is on fire, for the 16th day. And the media is not giving a f–- for this. #PrayForAmazonia.”
Madonna criticized Bolsonaro’s policies, writing on Instagram, “This is a devastation to Brazil — to the indigenous people who live there and the-plant and animal species that make this the most important bio-diverse Forest!!! President Bolsonaro please change your policies and help not only your country but the entire planet.”
The Fires Are Raging and The Amazonia continues to burn………This is a devastation to Brazil—to the indigenous people who live there and the-plant and animal species that make this the most important bio-diverse Forest!!! President Bolsonaro please change your policies and help not only your country but the entire planet. No economic development is more important than protecting this land. 🙏🏼 we need to WAKE -UP!! The future of the rainforest affects the future of the world! 🌎🌏🌍 #prayforamazonia #amazonrainforest #brazil #wakeup
A post shared by Madonna (@madonna) on Aug 22, 2019 at 12:35pm PDT