Bezos pledges $203.7 million more in grants for Earth Fund

By Sophie Alexander | Bloomberg

Jeff Bezos promised to give away $203.7 million by the end of the year as part of the Bezos Earth Fund, his $10 billion commitment to fight climate change, which he started last year.

Bezos is immediately donating $73.7 million of the total to 12 organizations, with the rest being granted by the end of the year to groups supporting the Justice40 Initiative, according to a statement Wednesday from the fund. The Justice40 Initiative is an effort by the Biden administration aimed at fighting climate change and supporting disadvantaged communities.

The gifts will bring the Bezos Earth Fund’s total donations to just under $1 billion, with 2020’s gifts totaling $791 million to 16 organizations. Bezos has promised to distribute the $10 billion by 2030.

“This funding is just the next step in the Bezos Earth Fund’s commitment to creating catalytic change during this decisive decade,” Andrew Steer, the group’s president, said in the statement.

Bezos recently unloaded $172 million worth of Inc. stock, which was designated as a charitable contribution, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Bezos, 57, has been on a giving spree recently, with a pair of philanthropic announcements sandwiching his trip to space.

Days before completing an 11-minute flight into space through his company Blue Origin, Bezos announced a $200 million gift to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, with the bulk of it going to establish the Bezos Learning Center. After the trip, Bezos said he would give $100 million each to Van Jones, a CNN political contributor and founder of Dream Corps, and chef Jose Andres, co-founder of World Central Kitchen, which helps feed people in disaster-stricken regions.

Bezos is worth $202.3 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. His ex-wife, MacKenzie Scott, has a $62.1 billion fortune, even after donating more than $8 billion in the past 14 months.