That's the thing about Malibu—you can't go out to dinner or process natural gas without running into a celebrity.
Pierce Brosnan and wife Keely Shaye Smith, Daryl Hannah, Halle Berry, Cindy Crawford, Ted Danson and a host of other famous faces were among the crowd of 1,000 people gathered in the beachside community Sunday to voice their opposition to a government plan involving the construction of a floating liquefied natural gas facility 14 miles off the coast of Malibu and nearby Oxnard.
"I've lived here for 23 years, and I find it terrifying and kind of rather sinister—this gas terminal they want to put out here," Brosnan told the local PCH Press. The Irish actor, who spearheaded the weekend rally with surfer Laird Hamilton, was also on the long list of celebs who signed a letter last month alerting fellow Malibu residents of the myriad ways the offshore processing plant could harm the area's delicate ecology.
"I am really concerned about my own backyard here and along the California coastline," Brosnan continued. "It's a big coastline and a big backyard. This has been creeping in quietly into our community. Not many people know about it. This could have disastrous consequences if they do build it."
According to the Coastal Advocates' Website (the official face of the protest movement), liquefied natural gas (LNG) is misleadingly touted as a clean fuel, but is, in fact, a fossil fuel that emits carbon dioxide and other nasties that aggravate global warming.
Hannah, a familiar face on the environmental circuit, joined surfers in a paddle-out protest in which about 360 people formed a huge "no" symbol (a circle with a line through it), an image captured by news helicopters. The Splash actress was clad in a black wetsuit and toting a pink surfboard.
Fellow stars David Duchovny and Tea Leoni, Minnie Driver, Jane Seymour, Roma Downey, Mark Burnett, Daniel Stern, Kenny G. and Gabrielle Reece also crowded the Malibu Pier on Sunday.
"It burns my ass they pick Oxnard, thinking it's a little small community, and they won't have the wherewithal to stand up and fight," Danson said. "That irritates me. Hugely."
"I don't think it's so much LNG on its own is the evil property, or that this is Malibu saying, 'not in our backyard,' " Leoni said. "It doesn't appear to be a great alternative. And I think until they could assure all of us this is something that is going to work and be right for the environment, not here. No. Not anywhere. Forget it."
Other locals who lent their autograph-worthy signatures to last month's letter campaign included Mary Steenburgen, Barbra Streisand and James Brolin, Cher, Jamie Lee Curtis, Danny DeVito and Rhea Perlman, Tom Hanks, Woody Harrelson, Ed Harris and Amy Madigan, Olivia Newton-John, Dylan McDermott and wife Shiva Rose, Craig T. Nelson, Martin Sheen, Trudie Styler and Sting, Charlize Theron and Stuart Townsend and composer Hans Zimmer.
Berry told the PCH Press that she was concerned about marine life, as well as how the decision to build the 13-story terminal would affect people in communities outside of Malibu.
"If one of these gets passed, you're sure there will be other ones that will affect other people in other areas," the Oscar winner said. "We have to use our voices and band together and stop this."