Two organizations backed by Hollywood star power recently announced a partnership to pursue climate action. The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation will give a grant of $650,000 to R20 Regions of Climate Action (R20), started by Arnold Schwarzenegger. According to a statement, the sum will go towards “renewable energy, energy efficiency, and waste management initiatives.”
Using the grant, R20 will identify green initiatives to benefit people around the world, construct projects, and then track their impact. R20 works with regional governments to bring about change more quickly than often happens at a national level. They work to identify and help fund community projects such as a solar bakery in Burundi, a waste management program in Algeria, and an LED streetlight program in Brazil.
DiCaprio said in a statement, “The Paris Agreement was an important first step for reducing global carbon emissions, but there is more that must be done to accomplish this important goal. Our partnership with R20 is a signal that it is also the responsibility of private organizations to take up the charge of accelerating the adoption of climate-saving technologies, worldwide. We call on others to follow our lead because our planet is quickly running out of time.”
The partnership aligns with the goals of the Cities Climate Finance Leadership Alliance started by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. In the statement Secretary-General Ban said, “Partnerships like this one strengthen the effort to unlock billions of dollars of private investment in projects that will urgently address climate change. I thank them for their commitment to our environment, and to the future of humanity.”
The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation has been around since 1998, working to combat climate change and conserve nature. R20 is a relatively newer player – in 2010 Arnold Schwarzenegger started the organization which now works with more than 560 “subnational and local governments” around the globe.