On Monday, the world’s richest man used a social network run by the world’s fifth richest man to announce a plan to save the planet.
In an Instagram post, Jeff Bezos announced plans to launch the Bezos Earth Fund, an initiative through which he says he will fund the work of scientists, activists, and NGOs, among others. The fund will begin making grants this summer, according to Bezos. “Earth is the one thing we all have in common,” he wrote. “Let’s protect it, together.”
The announcement makes no mention of Amazon, the company worth over $1 trillion that Bezos founded and runs. In a September 2019 report, the company for the first time disclosed its carbon footprint: 44.4 million metric tons in 2018. That’s larger than the estimated carbon footprint of Angola, a country of 30 million people, but less than 1% of the US’s total footprint (and less than Amazon’s chief competitor Walmart). Amazon says it is targeting carbon neutrality by 2040, more than 20 years from the time of the 2019 report.