October 11, 2009 – York University in Toronto is conferring an honorary doctorate on actor Woody Harrelson for his work on environmental issues.
Harrelson, now appearing in the movie Zombieland and coming up in the Canadian film Defendor, will get the accolade during convocation ceremonies Oct. 17, the university said in a news release.
The 48-year-old actor, who was nominated for an Oscar for The People v. Larry Flynt and was a series regular on Cheers, has also made a name for himself by promoting sustainability issues.
“Mr. Harrelson’s understanding of why we each need to reduce our ecological footprint is authentic, and his efforts to inspire others to grasp and act on this concept provide an object lesson for those of us who teach,” said Prof. Dawn Bazely, director of the Institute for Research and Innovation in Sustainability at York.
Harrelson lives a simple lifestyle in Hawaii with his wife, Laura Louie, and three daughters in a mostly self-sufficient community. The couple also run an organic food delivery company.
Most notably, he embarked on a bicycle tour, accompanied by a bio-fuelled bus, of the Pacific Coast Highway in 2001 to promote organic living.
Harrelson — a proponent of marijuana use, hemp products and yoga — lectured at college campuses along the way.
The tour was the subject of the Genie-nominated documentary Go Further, directed by acclaimed Canadian filmmaker Ron Mann.
Harrelson and his wife also set up the Voice Yourself website, a virtual one-stop shop for youth, small businesses, educational institutions and non-government organizations to promote their environmental programs. Source.