Hollywood stars Leonardo Di Caprio and Glenn Close are willing to support an environment-conservation project in Ecuador that would prevent the extraction of 850 million barrels of oil from the Amazon.
According to the Ecuadorian government Di Caprio, Chevy Chase, Edward Norton and renowned businessmen such as Steve Case met last Friday with Vice president Lenin Moreno and expressed interest in becoming ambassadors for the Yasuni-ITT natural reserve project.
Moreno and the show business celebrities held a meeting at a vessel belonging to National Geographic visiting the Galapagos Islands in the Ecuadorian Pacific as part of the so called Blue Mission which is supported by world personalities including scientists.
The proposal is “that you become ambassadors for this initiative; that you transmit to the world what is in effect ‘environmentalism’ “said the Ecuadorian official.
Ecuador’s plan is to leave unexploited the oil rich natural Amazon reserve of Yasuni in exchange for a global compensation of 3.5 billion US dollars (half the current price of oil) thus avoiding the emission of 410 million metric tons of carbon dioxide which has a direct influence on global warming.
“All those present besides supporting the Galapagos initiative want to be part of the Yasuni proposal”, said Ivonne de Baki campaign funds coordinator.
Vice President Moreno said Di Caprio offered to travel to the natural reserve in the Amazon with a group of friends to help launch the campaign.
The initiative is known as the Yasuni-ITT project because it involves the Ishpingo, Tambococha and Tiputini oilfields, which partly overlap with the untouchable zone in the southern part of the park, one of the most species-rich areas in the world.
The mega-diverse Yasuni Park, the largest national park in Ecuador was declared a world biosphere reserve by UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) in 1989.
Blue Misión is an initiative to to brainstorm strategies and options to rescue Earth's oceans and the brainchild of National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Sylvia Earle.