ByMegan Winkler

Jul 3, 2014

I love it when pretty people do good things. Why shouldn’t they use their good looks to draw your attention to something that matters? Sex sells baby and Ian Somerhalder is using his hunky good looks and the popularity from his role on “The Vampire Diaries” to work towards a better world. Yes, he’s got gorgeous baby blues, hugs puppies, fights for equal rights and loves the earth. He’s basically the whole package. Emerald and I have been on an Internet-browsing quest to find eco-loving celebs, so I naturally had to take a closer look at this gorgeous man. Tough day at the office; let me tell you.

Anyway, the actor founded the Ian Somerhalder Foundation (ISF) in 2010 and since then has been taking an integrated approach to improving the environment. The foundation believes that “working independently to transform our planet is like trying to play the violin without strings.” It’s not going to do any good if we don’t work together. This is a great sentiment, but I had to ask, is the ISF more than just a foundation with a pretty face?


There are a few go-to causes that celebrities pick on a pretty regular basis, mainly because they’re safe. You know what they are: recycling, solar power and animals. Sure enough, the foundation advocates buzzword efforts like biodiversity, biofuels and animal extinction issues. Cruelty-free shelters seem to be a big one for Somerhalder and he’s an advocate for solar power. At least the foundation is keeping the conversation going about campaigns that have become, quite honestly, ignored by a lot of people because they’re just so pervasive.


There have got to be thousands of Ian Somerhalder fangirls out there, so it’s no wonder he’s able to gather brigades of teenagers under the ISF banner to make the world better. Somerhalder could probably raise an army made of just prepubescent teen girls and take over the world pretty easily. But the point here is that the ISF gets youth involved on campaigns that have excluded young people before. We all know that one of the best ways to do good by the environment is to pass our conservation values on to the next generation.

It’s not all for show either. Youth members write copy for the ISF website and they get together to make a difference on the community level. Don’t be fooled, Somerhalder is definitely the face of the foundation and he believes what he preaches, but there’s a whole team of employees and volunteers that keep the gears going. And I’m sure there’s someone who gets to tell hunky Ian where to show up to. How’s that for a resume point? “I got to tell the guy that plays Damon Salvatore what to do.” But I digress. The point is that the team over at ISF wants to hear from youth and college students and I think that’s a great thing. Especially in an everybody-gets-a-trophy culture, kids who want to be involved in a worthy cause should be given every opportunity to do so.


So the ISF is all about green energy, mobilizing youth and ending animal cruelty, but what about the hard stuff? What about the ever-controversial nuclear power option or the often-ignored tidal power? I jumped on the site and using the search bar to find stuff about nuclear power, I found an article right at the top titled, “No Need to Fear Nuclear.” Oh. Cool! There are even more pro-tidal power (wave power) articles on the site as well.

Somerhalder is one of the founders of Go Green Mobile Power, a company that produces eco-friendly construction equipment, solar/hybrid power generators and solar powered temporary shelters. Talk about putting your money where your mouth is. He’s also met with President Obama to discuss youth issues and alternative energy sources. I can only imagine how nerve-racking that was. I have to say, I’m impressed.

By Megan Winkler

Eco-nerd, solar power enthusiast, DIY diva and professional coffee drinker, Megan has written everything from courses in healthcare and psychology to interior design and cooking advice. She has a master’s degree in military history, owns two chainsaws, is a collector of strange trivia and a world renowned Pinterest pro. She is constantly looking for better ways to do things.