DiCaprio Foundation Grants $2 Million to Ocean Conservation

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The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation contribution supports the creation of marine protected areas in the Pacific Islands and the Arctic, as well as improvement of fisheries enforcement in Europe, the United States and Central America.

Oceans 5

Oceans 5 is an exciting new platform for marine conservation. Working together with other philanthropists, we are making smarter, more impactful investments for the future of our planet.

The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation provided $2 million to Oceans 5, an international funders’ collaborative dedicated to stopping overfishing and establishing marine reserves in the world’s five oceans.

The funds will support projects creating large protected areas in the Pacific Islands and the Arctic, while also improving fisheries enforcement in Europe, the United States and Central America. DiCaprio’s contribution also supported the protection of threatened shark populations, created a large marine monument in remote Pacific waters of the United States, and advanced efforts to protect Antarctica.

“Oceans 5 is an exciting new platform for marine conservation. Working together with other philanthropists, we are making smarter, more impactful investments for the future of our planet,” said Leonardo DiCaprio, “The sad truth is that less than two percent of our oceans are fully protected. We need to change that now. My Foundation supports Oceans 5 projects that are directly improving ocean health by stopping overfishing and creating marine reserves.”

Oceans 5 is a new model for collaborative philanthropy. Founded in 2011, the organization develops and supports projects involving multiple groups working toward significant ocean conservation objectives. Oceans 5 includes eight donors who share a common inspiration for results-oriented grantmaking. Over the past three years, the group has supported thirteen projects, providing tangible benefits for the world’s oceans and strengthening ocean conservation philanthropy.

“The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation is a valued partner of Oceans 5,” said Kristian Parker, Chairman of the Geneva-based Oak Foundation, “Leo’s personal commitment is phenomenal. He brings enormous energy and enthusiasm to our work for the oceans.”

Ted Waitt, Founder and Chairman of the California-based Waitt Foundation, added, “Oceans 5 is about making a difference for future generations. Leo and his Foundation bring a strategic focus to helping coastal communities protect biodiversity. It is a strong addition to our group.”

DiCaprio’s grant will assist in the development of future initiatives and will directly support beneficiaries including:

  • A new coalition of four conservation groups, working to strengthen controls on illegal fishing in the European Union, the world’s largest seafood market;
  • A local organization in the Republic of Kiribati, working to implement the world’s fourth largest marine reserve, located in the Central Pacific;
  • A coalition of three organizations working to improve fisheries enforcement in Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia and Ecuador, including construction of a radar facility on Cocos Island;
  • A group of Cook Islanders working to create a marine park within a territory that is three times the size of California;
  • Several organizations working to create Arctic marine reserves in Canada, Greenland and Russia.

DiCaprio’s grants also supported a coalition of six organizations that worked successfully to secure new global trade restrictions for endangered sharks. The Foundation also supported an international coalition of organizations seeking to create the world’s largest protected areas in the waters around Antarctica.

Oceans 5 is a project of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, a New York-based public charity. Its Members and Partners include the Oak Foundation, Planet Heritage Foundation, Marisla Foundation, Waitt Foundation, Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, Moore Charitable Foundation, Angell Family Foundation and Bill and Shannon Joy.

Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation
Since 1998, the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation has built longstanding relationships with environmental leaders and experts, staying continually engaged and active on the most pressing issues of our day – protecting biodiversity, oceans and forest conservation, and climate change. The Foundation’s strategic approach to philanthropy relies upon key partnerships with effective environmental organizations and active collaboration with other funders that share the Foundation’s goals and can magnify its impact. Efforts are directed in two areas – providing grants to innovative, results-driven initiatives and media efforts that inspire the public to make a difference in the fight to protect our planet for future generations. For more information visit: http://www.leonardodicaprio.org. The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation is a component fund of the California Community Foundation.

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