Actor Harrison Ford has offered an emphatic plea for protecting the world’s oceans, calling out US President Donald Trump and others who “deny or denigrate science”.
The 76-year-old actor, best known for his roles in Star Wars and Indiana Jones, stressed the importance of acknowledging the effects of climate change in a speech on the closing day of the World Government Summit in Dubai.
Though never saying Mr Trump’s name, he clearly targeted the American president within the opening moments of his remarks.
“Around the world, elements of leadership – including in my own country – to preserve their state and the status quo, deny or denigrate science,” Ford said.
“They are on the wrong side of history.”
Mr Trump has repeatedly criticized the idea of climate change, despite it being supported by the vast majority of peer-reviewed studies, science organizations and scientists.
On Monday, the president tweeted that Democratic senator Amy Klobuchar announced her presidential run “talking proudly of fighting global warming while standing in a virtual blizzard of snow, ice and freezing temperatures”.
“Bad timing,” the president wrote.
Well, it happened again. Amy Klobuchar announced that she is running for President, talking proudly of fighting global warming while standing in a virtual blizzard of snow, ice and freezing temperatures. Bad timing. By the end of her speech she looked like a Snowman(woman)!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 10, 2019
Mr Trump often conflates cold spells and other incidents of weather with climate, which is long term.
Ford has long supported conservation efforts.
Before coming out on stage, his Emirati hosts played a video of him narrating a piece for Conservation International on the importance of protecting the oceans called Nature is Speaking.
“One way or another, every living thing here needs me,” Ford growls in the video.
“I’m the source. I’m what they crawled out of.”
In his address, Ford called on governments and officials to rely on “sound science” to shape their policy.
“We are faced (with) what I believe is the greatest moral crisis of our time,” he said.
“That those least responsible for nature’s destruction will suffer the greatest consequences.”
Ford added: “We need nature now more than ever because nature doesn’t need people, people need nature.”