Tech UPTechnology$ 10 billion against climate change

$ 10 billion against climate change

The richest person in the world, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos , announced on Monday, February 17, that he is taking the first steps to create an organization dedicated to the fight against climate change, putting up $ 10 billion of his own pocket as a first round of investment.

The Amazon magnate announced that his new fund will provide grants to scientists, activists, organizations and “any effort that offers a real possibility to help preserve and protect the natural world .” The new Bezos Earth Fund , the billionaire wrote in an Instagram post on Monday, will thus combat what he describes as “the greatest threat to our planet.”

On the Forbes list of philanthropists, the mogul’s organization ranks second behind the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation, most geared toward research in medicine. Until the announcement of the Bezos Earth Fund, the CEO of Amazon was the richest person in the world who, ironically, spent less money on charity .

“I want to work together with others to amplify known ways and explore new ways to combat the devastating impact of climate change on this planet,” added Bezos. “I am pledging to get started and will start awarding grants this summer. Earth is the one thing we all have in common – let’s protect it together.”

Movement not without criticism

For some people, Bezos’ investment is small compared to his immense fortune, estimated at € 100.44 billion according to Forbes . For this reason, not only is it demanding a greater effort, but before all this, try to avoid contradictions in its business policies.

Some of his employees, in fact, while applauding his philanthropic gesture, believe that Amazon should stop supporting oil and gas companies . He is also accused of having funded think tanks that deny climate change, such as the Competitive Enterprise Institute .

And above all, it is held responsible for still using thousands of diesel-powered trucks and vans, rather than starting to go for electric vehicles.

Bezos is trying to get around these criticisms with other initiatives, beyond economic investment. Last September, for example, he announced a series of initiatives within the framework of a new commitment to the fight against climate change , called the Climate Pledge .

As he stated then, by 2030 the multinational Amazon will use 100% renewable energy and will meet the objectives of the Paris climate agreement for 2040 , which would be 10 years before the most ambitious version of the objectives signed in the French capital.

Bezos has also focused on a new reforestation effort that will cost $ 100 million , while announcing an order for 100,000 electric freight vans as a first step to reduce the use of diesel transportation.

However, Amazon continues to be one of the technology companies that uses the least renewable energy. Only 17% of its consumption comes from renewable sources, while Apple uses 82% .

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