McCartney, Meyers, and Padma at the NRDC Benefit


We know a few CEOs who could take a cue from Paul McCartney, who (despite being a billionaire) has never been “that excessive,” the former Beatle told your starstruck Daily Intel correspondent at the NRDC Forces for Nature benefit last night, where his daughter Stella was honored for her environmental activism. “Generally speaking, I would probably be quite a reasonable example of modest living,” he added.

His frugality, he explained, has stemmed from being environmentally conscious. McCartney was a very early adopter of the green movement: His late wife, Linda, was a vegetarian and animal-rights activist, and his daughter’s fashion empire does not work with leather or fur. “We’re big animal people,” he said, noting that he hasn’t worn leather for 30 years. McCartney watches his energy consumption, too: Rather than a megayacht, for instance, he has a Sunfish. “All my friends have got the big yachts, and I sail up to them on my little tiny boat,” he laughed. “To tell you the truth, it’s because I’m not comfortable doing it the other way … I don’t live in a real big house; I get a bit uncomfortable, you know, when I’m rattling around.” Of course, even Sir Paul admits to the occasional splurge, like hiring a private plane. “You’ve still got to live, you know — you’ve got to do what you need to do.”