10 Hollywood Stars Making an Eco-Friendly Impact

5:16 PM 4/21/2019

by Jasmyne Bell

A list of stars who are working to put their money where their mouth is, moving toward reducing their carbon footprints and promoting ecological awareness.

In honor of Earth Day — Monday, April 22 — The Hollywood Reporter puts a spotlight on some familiar faces who are working toward a more sustainable and green way of living. Each one of these stars has made a significant commitment to the care and maintenance of the environment.

From donating millions to nonprofit organizations to actually founding their own organizations, some Hollywood veterans want to encourage the rest of the world to join them in showing love toward planet Earth.

Read on to see a list of 10 stars working to make difference. 

  • Ben Affleck

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    Ben Affleck co-founded the Eastern Congo Initiative in 2010 and has been using the organization to raise awareness of threatened natural resources in the region. According to its website, the initiative revolves around the philosophy that local, community-based approaches are essential to creating a sustainable and successful society in eastern Congo. In partnership with Matt Damon’s nonprofit, Water.org, Affleck used his organization to support clean water initiatives in Africa.

  • Drew Barrymore

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    Along with being an animal rights activist, Drew Barrymore launched her own home goods line, Flower Home, and a beauty line, Flower Beauty. The beauty products are all produced within the United States to avoid the environmental impact of transportation and shipping. Aside from being made of true and harmless ingredients, the products are affordable and accommodating for consumers. “I’m most proud of the price point we have managed to achieve with the formulas and materials we work with,” Barrymore told The Hollywood Reporter. “It’s an almost impossible endeavor, and it’s not something that people might know or understand or think about as a consumer. Our customer reviews are like, flawless — it’s amazing.”

  • James Cameron

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    In a stance against President Trump's remarks about climate change, director James Cameron targeted and rebutted the president's claims in the documentary Not Reality TV. The film referenced Trump's "reckless denial" of climate change and showed a clip of the GOP nominee calling global warming a "hoax." James Cameron spoke to The Hollywood Reporter back in 2016 about why he felt that making this documentary was necessary. "We made this film to show the reality of climate change — how it's directly affecting millions of people each day," said Cameron. "As I've said before, to save our planet we need to mobilize like we did during World War II — the threat to our country and children is that severe."

  • Matt Damon

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    In 1990, Matt Damon co-founded Water.org, an organization that works to provide the globe with access to clean water. This led him to being honored at the Environmental Media Awards in 2013. According to water.org, the organization has helped 17 million people gain access to clean water and filtration. Damon also participated in James Cameron and Jerry Weintraub’s documentary, Not Reality TV. 

  • Leonardo DiCaprio

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    Dubbed "the greenest guy in Hollywood," Leonardo DiCaprio has made significant strides in conservation. He has made investments in a vegan meat company and donated millions to help wildlife conservation and fight against climate change. DiCaprio has also invested in Allbirds, a sustainable shoe brand. For all of his efforts, the United Nations honored him with the title of Messenger of Peace on Climate Change.

  • Natalie Portman

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    Natalie Portman believes that all of her activism is related, from veganism to feminism. The environmentally conscious vegan narrated the 2018 documentary Eating Animals, and through that, raised awareness about the brokenness and horrors of the meat industry. “It seems like something that should be easily fixable if people wanted to, because it's not like anything has to be invented. It's literally like going back to old practices,” Portman told The Hollywood Reporter. The actress also created her own vegan shoe line that donates the proceeds to the nonprofit organization The Nature Conservancy.

  • Mark Ruffalo

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    Mark Ruffalo, who is part of an organization called Hollywood United for a Healthy California, challenged Barack Obama’s stance on climate change back in 2015. Once he became aware of the then-president’s stance on oil drilling, he spoke out in an effort to save the environment. Ruffalo has also started a campaign to ban hydrofracking, a controversial method of natural gas extraction. The actor was honored back in 2017 for his activism with Global Wildlife Conservation, specifically for turtle conservancy

  • Emma Watson

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    Back in 2011, Emma Watson collaborated with designer Alberta Ferretti to create an eco-friendly clothing line, Pure Threads. Since then, Watson has been intentional about her involvement in the sustainable fashion movement. She launched the Instagram account @the_press_tour specifically to share about the outfits she wore on the press tour for Beauty and the Beast. In captions, the actress educated her followers on the brand’s history and shared about their environmentally friendly standards. 

  • Olivia Wilde

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    Like Emma Watson, actress Olivia Wilde has launched a clothing line that is rooted in sustainable fashion. In honor of Earth Day, she has launched thredUP x Olivia Wilde & Conscious Commerce "Choose Used” capsule collection. With her heart set on raising awareness of the fashion industry’s harsh environmental impact, Wilde gave The Hollywood Reporter her insight on ethical consumer practices: “Sites like thredUP offer great brands, unique finds, plus the good vibes of upcycling. I'm excited to partner with them to inspire people to consume less and reuse more to combat textile waste and together build a more circular fashion future.”

  • Shailene Woodley

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    Actress Shailene Woodley is a known climate change activist and environmentalist. She co-founded All It Takes, a nonprofit organization that cultivates safer schools and communities through experiential social-emotional learning. In 2018, Woodley received the Children Mending Hearts’ Hero for Change award, which honors individuals who put their passion for causes into action to help improve their communities. She also says that 97 percent of her clothes are from thrift stores, and gathers her water from fresh springs when she gets the opportunity.