Nominated for an Academy Award for his stirring performance in 2004’s Hotel Rwanda, Don Cheadle has carved out a career for himself as not just one of Hollywood’s finest actors but also among the most philanthropic.
Currently starring alongside Robert Downey Jr. in Ironman 2, Cheadle has worked diligently to shine light on the Darfur crisis and was even honored three years ago with a Summit Peace Award by the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates.
His latest accomplishment is being named a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP), which “provides leadership and encourages partnership in caring for the environment by inspiring, informing, and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without compromising that of future generations.”
On the heels of his efforts just one year ago to inspire global policy makers to make positive changes on behalf of the environment during the Copenhagen Climate Conference of 2009, Cheadle is now attempting to propel America to the ‘forefront of the environmental movement’ by drawing attention to the latest eco-bill making the rounds.
The aptly named Global Conservation Act of 2010 (H.R. 4959) – which “places the strategic and diplomatic resources of the U.S. government behind efforts to address extinction and natural resource depletion worldwide” – calls for preventing species extinction, reducing billions of tons of carbon emissions, sustainably developing sea and land while conserving when at all possible, protecting freshwater supplies and applying $1.1 trillion in yearly disaster mitigation and eco-protection services.
Cheadle says that the United States isn’t yet a leader in the environmental movement but it is imperative that we step up to the plate. “As we see with this unfortunate oil spill that happened, really, the need for balance and wisdom in what we’re trying to do with this one Earth that we have … And I was kinda brought into this because it is something that’s close to my heart, and something that, as a father, I’m very interested in.”
See what Cheadle has to say in the video below (beginning at the 3:20 mark).