Adrian Grenier might be best known for his starring role in HBO’s Entourage, but he’s taking on a new challenge this week; swimming 3.3 km across the Strait of Messina. The Strait has long been known for its strong currents, which are even referenced in Homer’s Odyssey. So why is a Hollywood actor taking such a risk?
It’s all in aid of the #MakeASplash fundraising initiative for The Lonely Whale Foundation, an organisation dedicated to “bringing people closer to the world’s oceans through education and awareness, inspiring empathy and action for ocean health and the wellbeing of marine wildlife.” Every penny pledged to #MakeASplash goes towards a bilingual environmental education programme.
Grenier made a passionate case for environmental action during his recent appearance at Spikes Asia, where he was interviewed by Gordon Bowen of mcgarrybowen. “Oceans don’t have a 911,” he says. “We need to protect more of our oceans with marine protection areas.”
Cleaning up the ocean has become a personal mission for him. After falling in love with scuba diving, he soon got wise to the damage wreaked on the underwater environment by human beings, as we jettison tonnes of waste into the sea. “In the US alone, we throw out 500 million plastic straws every single day,” he writes, in an op-ed for Refinery29. “That’s enough plastic to wrap around the earth two and a half times each day.”
We can each make small but impactful choices in our daily lives to reduce this waste, says Grenier, even if it’s something as simple as requesting not to be served a straw in a bar or café. “Because if we don’t change our habits, there will be nearly more plastic than fish in our seas by the time my generation’s grandchildren are able to take their first swim lessons.”