Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio took aim at the “corporate greed” of the global oil and gas industry as world political and business leaders and celebrities gathered for the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos Switzerland.
DiCaprio – one of the world’s highest earning environmental campaigners – was honoured at the WEF Crystal Awards, which celebrate the achievements of leading artists who have shown “exemplary commitment” to improving the state of the world.
Rapper and entrepreneur Will.i.am, Danish artist Olafur Eliasson and Chinese actress Yao Chen also received awards.
Accepting his gong for “his leadership in tackling the climate crisis”, DiCaprio announced his charitable foundation was donating another £10.5million to environmental projects.
And urging distinguished guests at the event to help him battle climate change, he said: “We simply cannot allow the corporate greed of the coal, oil and gas industries to determine the future of humanity.
“Those entities with a financial interest in preserving this destructive system have denied and even covered up the evidence of our changing climate.
“Enough is enough. You know better. The world knows better. History will place the blame for this devastation squarely at their feet.”
It is not the first time the actor and producer has spoken so passionately on the subject – at the 2014 UN Climate Summit in New York he warned the world would “perish” without swift action.
“We need to put a pricetag on carbon emissions,and eliminate government subsidies for coal, gas, and oil companies,” he said then, adding: “We need to end the free ride that industrial polluters have been given in the name of a free-market economy.”
And at another New York event late last year he pledged to divest from his fossil fuel holdings and increase his investment in renewable-energy companies.
But the star of films including Titanic, Catch Me if You Can, The Great Gatsby, The Wolf of Wall Street and the Revenant, has also been accused of hypocrisy over his environmental stance.
Documents obtained by Wikileaks last year suggested DiCaprio took six private jet flights between LA and New York in just six weeks during 2014.