Through his Leonardo DiCaprio foundation, the Revenant actor has given $1 million to help the Seychelles islands protect their ocean territory, which comprises the majority of the country – over 95 per cent.
The Seychelles currently owe foreign investors up to $21.4 million in debt. As part of a new deal mediated by The Nature Conservancy, the country will instead commit to protecting 150,000sq miles of nearby seas in return for a restructured debt agreement.
Instead of high interest rate debt repayments, the government will now pay a local organisation called the Seychelles Conservation and Climate Adaptation Trust.
In a press release, DiCaprio commented: “We champion projects like this one across the globe that use cutting edge methods in conservation and environmental protection. This deal will enhance food security for the local people of Seychelles, help mitigate the effects of climate change on their low-lying island home, and protect the surrounding rich ocean ecosystems for future generations.”
Seychelles hopes to create a stronger economy by protecting coral reefs and reducing fishing practices which harm the country’s environment.
Photo Credit: Karen Borter on Flickr.