The Washington Post reports DiCaprio plans to spend $7 million over the next two years on marine conservation, while Obama vowed to use his executive authority “to protect some of our nation’s most precious marine resources.”
The president said the ocean is threatened by climate change, overfishing and pollution. But the U.S., he said, “is leading the fight to protect our oceans.”
Also Tuesday, Obama was expected to announce he’ll make a broad swath of the Pacific Ocean off-limits to fishing, energy exploration and other activities, according to another Washington Post report. The move would create the largest marine sanctuary in the world and double the amount of ocean that is fully protected.
The two spoke at a State Department conference, urging other countries to take action.
The European Union is already banning several countries from selling fish in its markets because of illegal fishing, and has warned several more they could face the same fate.
DiCaprio said that before he chose acting, he wanted to be a marine biologist.
“This isn’t simply an exercise in wildlife conservation,” DiCaprio told the conference. “If we don’t do something to save the ocean now, it won’t be just the sharks and the dolphins that suffer. It will be our children and our grandchildren.”