Entertainment

Celebrities supporting Extinction Rebellion admit to being hypocrites

Stars have signed an open letter saying they will not be silenced.

Celebrities have admitted being hypocrites over climate activism but asked the press not to focus on their “huge carbon footprints”.

In an open letter to the media, high-profile supporters of Extinction Rebellion have said there are more important issues than their own confessed hypocrisy.

Jude Law and Benedict Cumberbatch are among the A-list environmentalists urging the press to focus their critical energies on climate change, and not the lifestyles of celebrities.

Britain Climate Protest
Sir Mark Rylance, centre, takes part in a climate demonstration in central London (Alastair Grant/AP)

Steve Coogan, Bob Geldof, Sir Mark Rylance, and Ray Winstone are among the more than 100 famous figures who have signed the open letter.

Ian McEwan and Michael Morpurgo have also backed the admission.

Stars have confessed their own complicity in climate crises, a guilt they share with “everyone else”.

The letter states: “Dear journalists who have called us hypocrites. You’re right.

“We live high carbon lives and the industries that we are part of have huge carbon footprints.

“Like you, and everyone else, we are stuck in this fossil-fuel economy and without systemic change, our lifestyles will keep on causing climate and ecological harm.

“There is, however, a more urgent story that our profiles and platforms can draw attention to.

“Life on earth is dying.  We are living in the midst of the 6th mass extinction.”

Elements of the media have criticised high-profile supporters of climate activism for environmentally damaging behaviours, such as long and frequent flights or, in the case of Sherlock star Cumberbatch, being an ambassador for car brand MG.

Celebrities have pointed out that a more important story than their behaviour is climate change, and they will not stop campaigning.

The letter continues: “There are millions of children, called to action by Greta Thunberg, who are begging us, the people with power and influence, to stand up and fight for their already devastated future.

“We cannot ignore their call. Even if by answering them we put ourselves in your firing line.

“The stories that you write calling us climate hypocrites will not silence us.

“We invite all people with platforms and profiles to join us and move beyond fear, to use your voices fearlessly to amplify the real story.”

Alan Partridge star Coogan added: “Extinction Rebellion is a grassroots movement that should be applauded for putting this issue at the top of the agenda where it belongs.

“I stand in full support of these brave, determined activists who are making a statement on behalf of us all.”

Extinction Rebellion has recently launched a series of protests internationally, resulting police ordering activists to end their gatherings across the capital or risk arrest.

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