British Formula 1 racer Lewis Hamilton has pledged to donate $500,000 to support the fight against the bushfires ravaging Australia. The six-time world champion announced the donation on his social media accounts.

“It saddens me deeply to know that over 1 billion animals in Australia died a painful death, no way out, not their fault,” he wrote on Instagram.

“My love of animals is no secret and I can’t help but grieve for the defenceless animals thought to have died so far, pushing certain species closer to extinction.”

Hamilton said he was “lucky enough” to visit Australia — home of the Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit — often and therefore knew first-hand how “beautiful” the Oceanic country was.

“I’ve spent some time speaking to people in Australia who are working at the heart of this and I’m filled with admiration for everything they are doing,” he added, before urging people to think about the “impact we are having on our planet” and donating as much as they can towards the fire-fighting and wildlife rescue efforts.

“I’m donating $500K to support WIRES Wildlife Rescue and WWF Australia and the Rural Fire Services. If you are able and haven’t already, you can donate too,” he added.

Various personalities from all walks of life are making their contribution to the relief funds for bush fires which has till now claimed 27 human lives and millions of animals while also destroying nearly 2,000 houses.