To help overcome the threats facing our oceans, these ocean-loving A-listers are leading the way in marine conservation. Find out which stars are doing their bit to help the environment and save our planet's seas.
As well as being an Ocean Elder, one of a group of influential figures who lend their time and expertise to ocean conservation projects, Richard Branson has also set up Ocean Unite through his company Virgin. The non-profit raises money for environmental charities, funds ocean research projects and hosts a number of events and initiatives to encourage involvement and educate the public about the issues facing the seas - such as dressing up as a mermaid to support World Oceans Day.
Alongside raising money and awareness for ocean conservation, Branson has also taken part in a number of deep-sea dives to help marine researchers learn more about our oceans. Most recently, Branson joined a team of experts in an Aquatica Submarine to submerge 124 meters into the Belize Blue Hole. As well as broadcasting a live stream of their expedition, Branson helped conduct an analysis of the animals and bacteria living in the giant underwater sinkhole.
Thanks to his Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, actor Leonardo DiCaprio is possibly the most famous environmental campaigner in the world. As well and donating millions to ocean and environmental charities around the world, DiCaprio also uses his profile to draw attention to sustainability issues through documentaries and speeches. He posted this image with the caption: "Honored to be part of the #OurOcean Conference. We must take action now to protect our oceans before it’s too late."
American actress Nina Dobrev has long been known as a fan of the ocean, frequently posting images of vacations on board luxury yachts where she enjoys snorkelling and watersports. In January 2018 she cemented this by becoming an ambassador for ocean conservation charity Oceana. For her first duty Dobrev took part in a video campaigning for better protection of the world's sharks as part of Oceana's ongoing campaign to ban the trade and sale of shark fin products in the US.
“I was really struck by how graceful sharks are – and how uninterested they were in me," said Dobrev. "These are unique, fascinating animals and they deserve our respect. The US has a great opportunity to set a positive example and help discourage the demand for shark fins around the world.”
As an avid surfer and native Australian who grew up by the sea, it's no surprise that the ocean is close to actor Chris Hemsworth's heart. He shared this image from a trip to Hawaii in 2017 with the caption: "Big shout out to Kahi from @sustainablecoastlineshawaii who runs large scale beach cleans ups and is helping sustain the beauty of our fragile coastlines! Keep up the great work brother! #protectouroceans".
Supermodel Georgia May Jagger lent her talents to an ocean saving cause when she became the face of the swimwear arm of clothing brand Volcom. The American brand is one of the top fashion and beauty brands helping save the oceans thanks to a number of initiatives, including producing its swimwear from recycled fishing nets and plastic bottles and partnering with charities and organisations including the Surfrider Foundation, World Oceans Day and Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii.
Jack Johnson is the perfect example of how one person can make a big difference. Johnson's ocean conservation efforts began a few years ago when he and his team banned plastic drinking bottles at as many concerts as possible and have since escalated to him becoming a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Environment Programme and taking part in documentary The Smog of the Seas.
As this image posted to Johnson's official social media pages explained, "As a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Environment Programme, Jack encourages people around the world to take action for #CleanSeas. Today @unep has launched a new global campaign to turn the tide on ocean plastics and build a movement that harnesses the power of people, governments and businesses to tackle the issue and find solutions to plastic ocean pollution."
Actress January Jones has also long been a supporter of non-profit organisation Oceana and, like Dobrev, is part of its campaign to protect sharks by banning the sale of shark fins around the world. As an ambassador for the charity, Jones has been swimming with the animals at the Bimini Biological Field Station, also known as Shark Lab, where this image was taken.
As an ambassador for Adidas, a fashion brand that has long been involved with ocean conservation, model Karlie Kloss often takes part in campaigns surrounding its support of Parley's plastic waste initiatives. In July 2018 she posted this snap, taken in the Great Barrier Reef, to encourage fans to sign up to Adidas' Run for the Oceans - an initiative which aimed to raise awareness around ocean conservation and support the Parley Ocean Plastic programme through tracked runs and free group running events. Taking place over a one month period, Run for the Oceans saw 924,237 runners worldwide contribute 12,402,854km translating into millions of dollars donated by Adidas to Parley.
Model Anja Rubik is famously outspoken about ocean conservation issues on social media and has campaigned about everything from ocean coral bleaching to ending sport fishing. In spring 2017 she also posted a series of snaps (pictured) from the annual Parley Ocean School in the Maldives.
The school is run by Parley for the Oceans, a conservation charity which works with brands such as adidas and G Star to find innovative solutions to the threats facing the oceans, and takes advocates and ambassadors on a week-long journey of education, activism and exploration in this incredible marine environment. She shared this image of the group with the famous Jacques Cousteau quote, "The sea, the great unifier, is man's only hope. Now, as never before, the old phrase has a literal meaning: we are all in the same boat."
You may recognise actress Kate Walsh from some of your favourite TV shows, including Grey's Anatomy and more recently the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why and The Umbrella Academy. Alongside her acting work, Walsh is passionate about ocean conservation and works primarily with NGO Oceana to raise awareness about the ocean crisis. in 2009, Walsh traveled with Oceana to the US Virgin Islands to swim with sea turtles, later appearing in an Oceana PSA about the threats these animals face. Since then, Walsh attended Oceana's anniversary event of the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill to speak out about offshore oil drilling and in In 2012 travelled to Belize to visit and help protect the second largest barrier reef in the world. Most recently, Walsh participated in the Coastal Voices Summit to urge against offshore drilling and seismic airgin blasting in the Atlantic Ocean.
Image courtesy of Creative Commons and Oceana.org.