Malala Yousafzai, the Nobel peace prizewinner, has joined Greta Thunberg and 150 celebrities and scientists calling on world leaders to make ecocide — the mass damage of nature — a criminal offence.

They have written an open letter urging governments to “face up to the climate emergency” and take immediate steps to cut emissions. Leonardo DiCaprio, Juliet Binoche, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ben Stiller, Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix and Mark Ruffalo are among the actors who have signed the letter. Ellie Goulding, Annie Lennox and Coldplay have also put their names to the call, as have the fashion designer Stella McCartney and Margaret Atwood, the writer.