Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has named 16 environmental organisations to become beneficiaries of the first round of disbursements from his $10 billion Earth Fund for combating the effects of climate change.
World’s richest man announces beneficiaries of $10B Climate Fund
On Monday 16 November, Jeff Bezos named 16 environmental organisations that will receive the first disbursements of his $10 billion Earth Fund for climate action on Instagram. Collectively, they’ll receive $791 million from the world’s richest man, however Bezos did not specify how much would go to each group.
‘We can all protect the Earth’s future’ —Jeff bezos
Worlds richest man, Jeff bezos has announced the first round of donations from his $10 billion fund to fight climate change. The Amazon founder debuted The Bezos Earth Fund earlier this year in an Instagram post. He described climate change as ‘the biggest threat to our planet’. Now, Bezos has chosen 16 environmental organisations to support with a total donation of $791 million (€667m/£595m).
He said: “I’ve spent the past several months learning from a group of incredibly smart people who’ve made it their life’s work to fight climate change and its impact on communities around the world.
“I’m inspired by what they’re doing, and excited to help them scale….
“We can all protect Earth’s future by taking bold action now.”
However, Bezos is not without controversy, and his growing wealth has been met with heavy criticism during the COVID-19 pandemic. Earlier this year, the entrepreneur’s fortune skyrocketed a staggering $13 billion in one single day. His net worth is said to be more than $180 billion at the time of writing.
The beneficiaries of Jeff Bezos’ first round of donations are:
- The Climate and Clean Energy Equity Fund.
- ClimateWorks Foundation.
- Dream Corps Green For All.
- Eden Reforestation Projects.
- Energy Foundation.
- Environmental Defense Fund.
- The Hive Fund for Climate and Gender Justice.
- Natural Resources Defense Council.
- The Nature Conservancy.
- NDN Collective.
- Rocky Mountain Institute.
- Salk Institute for Biological Studies.
- The Solutions Project.
- Union of Concerned Scientists.
- World Resources Institute.
- World Wildlife Fund.
Bezos has recently made climate-oriented initiatives a key focus at Amazon
CNBC report that many of the grantees are receiving funds for specific projects, while other recipients will re-grant the funds and donate to other nonprofits, a spokesperson for the Earth Fund said.
For example, the World Wildlife Fund said it will use the $100 million award to protect and restore mangroves from “climate-accelerated weather events,” and to develop new markets for seaweed as an alternative to fossil fuel-based products.
Bezos, who previously referred to climate change as “the biggest threat to our planet,” has recently made climate-oriented initiatives a key focus at Amazon. The company has faced pressure from employees and others to address concerns that its e-commerce and logistics business contributes to global carbon emissions.
In September, Amazon announced the first recipients of its $2 billion Climate Pledge Fund, which is designed to invest in “sustainable and decarbonizing technologies.”
Amazon also launched the “Climate Pledge” last September, which encompasses a number of ambitious goals, including a commitment to be carbon neutral by 2040. It has also purchased electric delivery vans and invested $10 million to help conserve or restore forests in the U.S. Northeast.
Jeff Bezos is not our planet’s savior
Below you find a personal note, written by our founder, Michiel de Gooijer.
We applaude Jeff Bezos for granting large sums of money to help save our planet. But let’s not get carried away just yet. Jeff Bezos his wealth is estimated at $144 billion, so $10 billion is basically a rounding error. More importantly however, is how he has been able to amass such incredible wealth. Yes, he works very hard (so do many others). Yes, he is pretty smart (a God given talent). But he is also ruthless in how he has applied his trades… He is responsible for the demise of countless small (and bigger) businesses, alledgedly has a brutal workplace culture, loves using tax havens and other loopholes to pay little or no taxes, and stimulates a popular culture that evolves around maximising consumption.
So, at BrightVibes we do not celebrate how he is making his money, but of course welcome any and all investements in protecting our planet, and mitigating climate change. Hopefully, he will not just see this as a side project but incorparates this at all levels of Amazon’s operations. – Michiel de Gooijer (founder of BrightVibes)