As GAIN Fact Checker recently reported, a group of celebrities have called on President Biden to shut down the Dakota Access Pipeline, which has been safely transporting crude oil to American consumer markets for more than three and a half years. Celebrities who lent their names to the letter include Leonardo DiCaprio, Scarlett Johansson, Ryan Reynolds, Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Jason Momoa, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Joaquin Phoenix, Jane Fonda, Cher, Chelsea Handler and Amy Schumer.
In their letter, the high-profile personalities urge the President to shutter DAPL to “address the climate crisis.” However, cutting back on their private jet travel doesn’t seem to be part of the broader agenda.
As Fox News recently explained, private jets have been estimated to emit upward of 40 times as much carbon per passenger as commercial flights. The outlet exposed a lengthy history of lavish private jet travel for many of the wealthy signees. Some of the best hits include:
DiCaprio famously raised eyebrows back in 2016 when he expanded his carbon footprint by 8,000 miles flying back from France to New York and back to France all to pick up an environmental award.
Johansson was photographed exiting a private plane in new Zealand, where she traveled to film “Ghost in the Shell,” while Rolling Stone magazine documented Evans’ plan to catch a private flight to surprised moviegoers in Arizona.
On another occasion, Evans was mocked after being photographed wearing a shirt dedicated to fighting climate change while aboard a private jet. Fonda once bragged about having sex aboard a private jet and Cher once took one all the way to Australia.
The jet-setting Hemsworth’s fondness for the private air travel is well documented and Handler once bragged that she flew her dog privately to meet her on vacation.
The hypocrisy from Hollywood comes only days after it was revealed that Biden’s recently appointed climate czar, John Kerry, took a private jet to Iceland in 2019 to receive the Arctic Circle award for climate leadership.
Oil and gas plays a critical role in enabling our modern way of life. Fueling air travel is just one of its many uses. Encouraging the development of renewable energy sources is important, but denying the facts and reality of our energy needs aren’t doing the American people any favors.
Calling for DAPL’s shutdown and its accompanying shortsighted rhetoric is irresponsible. DAPL, and more broadly, American energy production and capabilities, is key to fueling the American economy and achieving our national security and foreign policy goals.