Joaquin Phoenix, Moby Back Campaign to Boycott Companies Tied to Amazon Rainforest Harm

By Etan Vlessing 3/4/20 |

Photo courtesy of The Press House.

Oscar-winner actor Joaquin Phoenix and music artist Moby joined the global fight to tackle the climate crisis when they joined a delegation that spoke before Los Angeles City Council voted 13 to 0 on Feb. 26 to divest from companies whose products profit from the deforested Brazilian Amazon rainforest.

Author and activist Richard Greene, betting consumer pressure can end the rainforest destruction, also attended the LA council meeting.

And he urged followers to coalesce around council member and long-time campaigner Paul Koretz as he insisted the win at the city council level would be leveraged via additional Amazon rainforest protection efforts by getting people to register and vote via the voter registration portal Headcount.

"All people who love the Amazon rainforest and want to protect 'the lungs of the Earth' have to do is to register and vote for candidates like Councilman Paul Koretz who pledge to introduce or vote for legislation to divest from deforested rainforest products," Greene urged in a press release.  

The Amazon rainforest accounts for around 25 percent of the carbon that forests worldwide annually absorb to offset environmental destruction.  

Scientists and environmental activists contend the Amazon forest must be saved and protected to minimize dangerous levels of global heating, even as Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro has allowed farmers, miners and loggers to cut down trees in the region for profit, including from beef exports.

"President Bolsonaro of Brazil is purposely burning down the rainforest to generate income. When enough cities, states and countries stop sending money to Brazil for products from deforested Brazilian rainforest, the burning will stop," Greene argued.

On the political front, Greene pointed to enlisting support for California AB 2002, or the California Deforestation Free Procurement Act at the state level, and the U.S. Senate resolution sponsored by Democratic Senator Brian Shatz and Republican counterpart John Kennedy that calls for Brazil to tackle fires in the Amazon rainforest and stop illegal deforestation. 

Corporate boycotts of Brazilian products have expanded elsewhere to ease Amazon rainforest destruction, including with U.S. clothing company VF Corporation, whose brands include Timberland and The North Face, ending Brazilian leather purchases.

"Our actions to reduce emissions across our global supply chain are meaningful and growing. We’ve committed to using 100 percent renewable energy at all owned and operated facilities worldwide by 2025. We are helping our third-party suppliers reduce their own emissions, and we are making changes in how we source materials and manufacture products to consistently become more energy efficient,"  the company said.

Air Force 1

* is an online magazine covering the good deeds of individuals, charities and businesses.