Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced today that he would commit $10 billion to fight climate change through the Bezos Earth Fund.
Bezos announced the new fund on Instagram. “Climate change is the biggest threat to our planet. I want to work alongside others both to amplify known ways and to explore new ways of fighting the devastating impact of climate change on this planet we all share,” he wrote.
The 56-year-old added that the “global initiative” will fund scientists, activists, and NGOs as well as “any effort that offers a real possibility to help preserve and protect the natural world.”
“We can save Earth. It’s going to take collective action from big companies, small companies, nation states, global organizations, and individuals,” Bezos wrote.
Protecting Earth Together
The Bezos Earth Fund will start issuing grants this summer. Bezos, the richest man in the world, is worth just shy of $130 billion, so $10 billion represents just a fraction of that—7.7 percent, according to Business Insider.
“Earth is the one thing we all have in common — let’s protect it, together,” he concluded.
While none of the Bezos Earth Fund’s first recipients have been announced, the Amazon founder has previously invested in sustainable food.
Breakthrough Energy Ventures, a global group made up of high net worth investors—including Bezos, Bill Gates, and Richard Branson—led a $90 million Series A funding round for Motif FoodWorks.
The Boston-based food tech startup is developing realistic animal protein using fermentation. Its first three proteins—dairy, egg, and meat—are expected to launch in early 2021. Animal agriculture is taxing on the planet, responsible for 14.5 percent of all global greenhouse gas emissions, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN.
“Sustainability and accessible nutrition are among the biggest challenges facing the food industry today. Consumers are demanding mindful food options, but there’s a reigning myth that healthy and plant-based foods must come at a higher price, or cannot taste or function like the animal-based foods they aim to replicate,” Motif FoodWorks John McIntyre told Fast Company.
As well as Motif FoodWorks, Bezos has funded Chilean startup NotCo, which makes vegan mayonnaise, Greek yogurt, and cheese using artificial intelligence. Craftory, a fund created by Italian businessman Elio Leoni Sceti and Bezos Expeditions, invested $30 million in the brand last March.