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Leonardo DiCaprio gives $3 million to Oceana, marine species advocacy group

Leonardo DiCaprio on Dec. 15, 2013 in New

Leonardo DiCaprio on Dec. 15, 2013 in New York. Credit: AP / Victoria Will

International advocacy group Oceana says it has received a $3 million grant from the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation for its work to protect threatened ocean habitat and keystone marine species such as sharks.

Oceana said in a statement Thursday the grant, which will be spread over a three-year period, will also support its work to advocate for responsible fishing measures, including a ban on California drift gillnets.

CEO Andy Sharpless said DiCaprio's support will help Oceana in its efforts to win more protections for countless sharks and other marine animals and for ocean habitats in the Pacific and Arctic, "which include some of the most productive ocean places in the world."

Oceana said it's working to ban drift gillnets off California in order to protect dolphins, whales, turtles and other marine animals from being caught and killed as "bycatch."

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