Leonardo DiCaprio urges Scotland to be a ‘world leader’ in rewilding efforts

The Hollywood actor posted support for the Scottish Rewilding Alliance’s campaign on his Instagram.

Leonardo DiCaprio has called for Scotland to become a rewilding nation
Leonardo DiCaprio has called for Scotland to become a rewilding nation (Doug Peters/PA)

Leonardo DiCaprio has joined Scottish environmentalists in urging ministers to declare the country a rewilding nation.

The American actor took to Instagram to share the message of the Scottish Rewilding Alliance with his 61.1 million followers.

The alliance is a coalition of more than 20 nature organisations urging the Scottish Government to declare Scotland as the first rewilding nation in an effort to boost conservation strategies.

The Hollywood star’s post has already attracted more than 48,000 likes as he wrote: “Scotland could be a world leader in rewilding its landscapes, ensuring clean air and water, storing carbon, reducing flooding, restoring wildlife, and improving the lives of locals.”

He urged his followers to visit the link in on his social media page to learn more about the cause.

It is not the first time DiCaprio has showed an interest in the Scottish environment, previously drawing in large crowds at Cop26 in Glasgow.

At the time, he was a UN representative on climate change and interacted with Maryhill locals at a fringe event in the Engine Works on Lochburn Road.

Leonardo DiCaprio attends an event at the Cop26 summit in Glasgow in 2021
Leonardo DiCaprio attends an event at the Cop26 summit in Glasgow in 2021 (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

The Scottish Government previously said it was working to unlock the full potential of restoration projects.

Ministers have been urged to commit to nature recovery across 30% of the country’s land and sea.

Figures recorded by the alliance suggested 2.1% of Scotland’s land was rewilding, with 150 projects covering at least 160,000 hectares.

But the environmental groups warned the project would need to be significantly scaled up to meet the 30% target.

A Scottish Government spokesperson previously said restoring the country’s natural environment is “a key way” to fight nature loss and climate change.

The spokesperson added: “We are working hard to unlock the full potential that nature restoration projects can bring to rural communities through our £65 million nature restoration fund, which has already committed nearly £40 million since 2021.

“The fund has supported local businesses to boost nature tourism, helped landowners with pollinator projects to boost food production and supported projects that have improved access to both green spaces and our marine environment throughout Scotland.

“These projects have brought a myriad of benefits to rural communities such as creating new jobs, providing natural flood defences, and helping to support the recovery of vulnerable species, such as the wild salmon.”