US stars weigh in on global warming

Leonardo DiCaprio

Leonardo DiCaprio

PARIS: Leonardo DiCaprio delivered a Hollywood-style jolt Friday to divided UN climate talks in Paris, challenging negotiators to act boldly and swiftly to save mankind from disastrous global warming.

Joining Oscar-winner Robert Redford in the French capital, DiCaprio tried to inject much-needed urgency into efforts to strike a deal to curb greenhouse gas emissions that threaten to play havoc with Earth’s delicate climate system.

“Please do not let fear and doubt slow you down. Be bold, be courageous, do everything in your power to change our current course,” DiCaprio told a summit of local leaders at the Paris town hall, held on the sidelines of the UN conference.

DiCaprio, one of the world’s most famous actors but also a longtime environment campaigner, told negotiators they had the option of being “timid” and settling for a face-saving agreement.

“Or they can lead. They can return to their home towns and with a real plan to save the planet,” he said.

Redford, an Oscar-winning director and another passionate environment advocate, told the same gathering: “It is even more urgent than ever.”

Adding more star power pressure on negotiators, Sean Penn arrives at the UN talks on Saturday to press for the safeguarding of forests, which play a vital role by soaking up carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and Arnold Schwarzenegger is scheduled to swoop in early next week.

They will follow an historic summit of 150 world leaders who opened the talks on Monday with a chorus of calls for urgent action.



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