Leonardo DiCaprio Supersizes his Environmental Footprint

Much is made of Hollywood megastar Leonardo DiCaprio’s electric car ownership. Certainly it endears him to the NRDC, on whose board of trustees he sits. But such green living doesn’t really matter when your other vehicle is a superyacht. And not just any superyacht; DiCaprio lives large in the Topaz, the fifth biggest yacht in the world.

It’s difficult to get an exact gas mileage estimate for such a watercraft, but most estimates place it an appalling low 1 mile per gallon (mpg). At least 20 of Leo’s friends are joining him aboard this super-inefficient yacht in Rio de Janeiro to celebrate the World Cup in style. Better yet, he is “borrowing” the yacht from Emirati Sheik Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, whose family’s $150 billion fortune is derived almost wholly from oil.

This is the hypocrisy equivalent of diet guru Richard Simmons eating a thousand pound plate of cheese fries in a single sitting—while telling the rest of us to lay off the fat.

Meanwhile, Leo and the NRDC have no qualms about using their big influence to force the rest of us to improve our vehicle’s gas mileage. They have consistently pushed for a mandatory minimum of 54.5 mpg, which most experts say will significantly increase vehicle prices.

Leo’s yacht use fits with his other examples environmental hypocrisy. He recently bragged that he was going to “fly around the world doing good for the environment,” apparently unaware that the emissions from a single transatlantic flight can equal those of a year’s worth of driving. He also seems to be building a property empire, purchasing three more homes this spring, despite the fact that buildings contribute around 40 percent of global emissions. Clearly, the NRDC is willing to look the other way on these transgressions so long as it can continue pointing to pictures of him getting out of his electric car.

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