Jaden Smith speaks about staying authentic as a creator at the Samsung Galaxy Creators Collective; Megan Thee Stallion attends the 2023 MTV Music Video Awards
Source: Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images for Samsung Galaxy Creators Collective; Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images for Louis Vuitton; John Nacion/WireImage

Breaking Barriers Beyond the Studio: Rappers Who Are Leading the Charge for Environmental Change

A growing number of rappers are raising awareness about environmental issues. These MCs are proof that even hip-hop heads care about the planet.


Dec. 29 2023, Updated 1:23 p.m. ET

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In addition to dropping bars and making waves for their over-the-top antics, many rappers have made it a point to spearhead environmental causes.

In a genre often associated with societal struggles, some musicians have proven that hip-hop can be a powerful force for positive change. These eco-friendly MCs are stepping up to the mic to deliver a different kind of message — one that echoes the urgent need to care for our planet.

Jaden Smith

jaden smith
Source: Getty Images

Jaden Smith speaks onstage during 'The Future Innovator of the Year Challenge' panel

Jaden Smith has always stepped outside the box when it comes to his professional endeavors, and his JUST Water brand is proof of this.

The son of Will and Jada Pinkett Smith started JUST Water in 2015 with the goal of providing responsibly sourced water to customers. The water comes in eco-friendly cartons created from plant-derived materials.

Jaden opened up about why he started the brand and explained that he simply wanted to do the right thing with his fame.

“I just want to give back because I love the world so much and I care about the world, and I care about the people in the world,” he told Complex. “I just want to give back because it's the right thing to do.”

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Megan Thee Stallion

megan thee stallion
Source: Getty Images

Megan Thee Stallion attends the 2023 GQ Men Of The Year

Megan Thee Stallion is the “Hot Girl Coach” and the leader of the beach cleanup crew.

In 2019, the Houston rapper led the first-ever Hottie Beach Cleanup event in California – where she invited a group of her fans to the Santa Monica Pier to help clean the beach.

“It’s not all about driving the motherf--king boat. We got s--t to do,” Megan said in a video shared on Instagram (via The Source). “We got s--t to save. Causes to motherf--king fulfill. I really want to help.”

The “Savage” rapper has also shared tips for living a more environmentally friendly life. She suggested that her fans carry reusable bags, recycle, use refillable water bottles, and avoid dairy products.

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Pharrell Williams

pharrell williams
Source: Getty Images

Pharrell Williams is seen outside Sacai fashion show during the Womenswear Spring/Summer 2024

Rapper, singer, and style icon Pharrell Williams makes no secret of his philanthropic efforts.

He combined his love for fashion and the environment by collaborating with G-Star Raw and Bionic Yarn to create a line of clothes made from plastic found in the ocean. G-Star x Pharrell RAW offered denim jeans, jackets, and t-shirts infused with recycled material.

Additionally partnered with the United Nations and former US Vice-President Al Gore for "Live Earth: Road to Paris," a 2015 concert series that aimed to raise awareness about climate change.

“I believe that climate change is one of the defining issues of our time, one that threatens our very existence on Earth," Pharrell said in a video released by the ILO's World of Work Summit.

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Lil Dicky

Lil Dicky enlisted some of music’s biggest names for his 2019 “Earth” music video with hopes of raising money for environmental causes. The video features cameos from Snoop Dogg, John Legend, Justin Bieber, and Ariana Grande.

With a total of 740 million streams, the song raised more than $600,000 that Lil Dicky was able to donate to various organizations (according to a press release obtained by Live For Live Music.)

“Thank you to every Earthling out there for listening and spreading the word,” Lil Dicky said in a statement. “Unfortunately, the fight to save this planet isn’t even close to over, and we’re going to have to amplify our efforts way more to turn this thing around.”

The author’s content and opinions have not been pre-reviewed, approved or endorsed by Discover.

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