Last February, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced that he was launching the Bezos Earth Fund that would grant money to scientists, activists, NGOs and others making an effort to help preserve and protect the natural world. The fund would start out with $10 billion and would begin issuing grants later in the year.
In November, the first Earth Fund award recipients were announced. In total, 16 organizations will be receiving nearly $800 million in funding.
The largest awards include the following: the Environmental Defense Fund received $100 million to build and launch MethaneSAT, a satellite that will locate and measure sources of methane pollution around the world and provide public access to data that assures accountability.
The Natural Resources Defense Council was awarded $100 million to advance climate solutions and legislation at the state level, promote policies and programs focused on reducing oil and gas production, protect and restore ecosystems that store carbon, and accelerate sustainable and regenerative agriculture practices.
The Nature Conservancy also received $100 million and plans to use the money to help protect the Emerald Edge forest. (That is the largest intact coastal rainforest on Earth, spanning 100 million acres through Washington, British Columbia and Alaska).
The World Resources Institute will receive $100 million, doled out over five years, to be used to develop a satellite-based monitoring system to advance natural climate solutions around the world.
An additional $100 million award went to the World Wildlife Fund to help protect and restore mangroves, develop new markets for seaweed as an alternative to fossil fuel-based products, and to protect forests and other ecosystems around the world.
Photo, posted March 4, 2015, courtesy of Kevin Gill via Flickr.