Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Celebrity environmental quotes. How celebrities influence public opinion on environmental issues.

All too often, people concerned about the environment and trying to make a difference are parodied by cynical celebrities as tree huggers, eco warriors and cranks. TV programmes caricature the hippy eco warrior with long pleated hair, silly looking hat and cardigan stood in front of some symbol of corporate excess and refer to them as protestors from the environmental movement.

In reality, I suspect that very few people would claim to have no concern about the environment and the world that our children will inherit. And it is not just about the now tiresome debate over whether global warming is true or not. It is also about protecting the rainforests and endangered species from extinction, working out how we will feed and support a rapidly increasing human population, where we will get our energy from as fossil fuels run out and much more. Then there are issues of fair trade. How many people are truly comfortable knowing that the cheap shirt they bought was produced by young children working in sweatshop conditions? These are very real and pressing concerns for all of us and not just the preserve of a small group of so-called eco warriors.

Whether we like it or not, opinions and perceptions about the environment are heavily influenced by the media and celebrities, what they say, what they do and how they behave. A stark contrast in environmental quotes from a range of well known celebrities and public figures is shown below.

Does anyone really imagine for a moment that my wife gives two stuffs about global warming? She certainly did not appear to be all that bothered on Thursday evening when, during the great carbon-saving switch-off, I ran round the house furiously turning on every light, hair dryer, dishwasher and toaster. Jeremy Clarkson, TV Presenter and Journalist

It is not just global warming, it is not just a loss of biodiversity, it is not just the pollution of our oceans and the clearing of our rainforests and all these complicated systems, The [11th Hour] movie talks about the world economy, it talks about politics, it talks about personal transformation and environmental consciousness that we need to have in this generation to implement a lot of these changes that need to occur. Leonardo DiCaprio, Actor

I think the environment should be put in the category of our national security. Defence of our resources is just as important as defence abroad. Otherwise what is there to defend? Robert Redford, Actor

Cows eat grass and silage. This is melting the ice caps and killing us all. So they need a new foodstuff: something that is rich in iron, calcium and natural goodness. Plainly they cannot eat meat so here is an idea to chew on. Why not feed them vegetarians? Jeremy Clarkson, TV Presenter and Journalist

In the absence of sound oversight, responsible businesses are forced to compete against unscrupulous and underhanded businesses, who are unencumbered by any restrictions on activities that might harm the environment, or take advantage of middle-class families, or threaten to bring down the entire financial system. Barack Obama, US President

A lot of lies and misinformation has been put about by eco nuts on the back of a report by an idiot economist [Sir Nicholas Stern]. Environmental head bangers are talking nonsense when they claim that aviation is the fastest-growing source of carbon emissions. Coal-fired and oil-fired power stations are the biggest contributor of carbon but I have yet to hear any fearless eco warriors advocating nuclear power as they drive around in their SUVs to their next protest meeting. Michael OLeary, Ryanair

Our generation has inherited an incredibly beautiful world from our parents and they from their parents. It is in our hands whether our children and their children inherit the same world. Richard Branson, Tycoon

We want to annoy the ******* whenever we can. The best thing we can do with environmentalists is shoot them. Michael OLeary, Ryanair

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