Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio on Wednesday highlighted the water crisis that Chennai is facing. The Oscar-winning actor shared a post from BBC News with a picture of a dried-up well in the city surrounded by women with empty pots on the photo-sharing platform Instagram. He commented on the post himself, saying, “We can change the world!”
Chennai, along with other parts of Tamil Nadu, has been grappling with a severe water shortage for several months now. Chennai alone requires 800 million litres of water every day against the current supply of 525 megaliters per day. Last week, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had offered 20 lakh litres of drinking water to the Tamil Nadu government to tackle its water crisis. However, the Tamil Nadu had declined the offer.
“Only rain can save Chennai from this situation,” the post from BBC read. “A well completely empty, and a city without water. The southern Indian city of Chennai is in crisis, after the four main water reservoirs ran completely dry. The acute water shortage has forced the city to scramble for urgent solutions and residents have to stand in line for hours to get water from government tanks.”
It added: “As the water levels depleted, hotels and restaurants started to shut down temporarily, and the air con was turned off in the city’s metro. Officials in the city continue to try and find alternative sources of water — but the community continues to pray for rain.”
DiCaprio, who has 32 million followers on Instagram, is renowned for his work as an environmentalist and has been an active participant in raising awareness about global warming. He is also the founder of Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, which supports projects around the world that build climate resiliency, protect wildlife and restore balance to threatened ecosystems and communities. The 44-year-old actor has raised millions of dollars to assist in protection of the environment. He also produced and starred in the 2016 documentary film Before the Flood, which focused on climate change.
“Climate change is real. It is happening right now,” the actor had said in his acceptance speech at the 2016 Oscars. “It is the most urgent threat facing our entire species. We need to work together to stop procrastinating. Let us not take this planet for granted. I do not take tonight for granted.”