Jeff Bezos announced during an interview on Sunday that he will give away most of his $124 billion fortune to charities fighting climate change.
Speaking to CNN, the Amazon founder said he wants to support people who can unify humanity and heal deep social and political divisions.
The tycoon did not give specific details about the exact charities he will donate to or how much he will give or when during an interview with CNN.
Sitting alongside his partner, Lauren Sanchez, the businessman said they are “building the capacity to be able to give away this money.”
Bezos to donate most of his wealth during his lifetime
Bezos confirmed that he will donate most of his wealth during his lifetime, saying: “The hard part is figuring out how to do it in a levered way. It’s not easy, building Amazon was not easy.”
“It took a lot of hard work, a bunch of very smart teammates and I’m finding that philanthropy is very similar—it’s not easy it’s very hard,” he said.
“We are building the capacity to being able to give away this money,” he explained. “There are a bunch of ways that I think you could do ineffective things, too.”
“So you have to think about it carefully and you have to have brilliant people on the team,” Bezos concluded.
Exclusive: Jeff Bezos tells CNN that he'll give away the majority of his $124 billion net worth during his lifetime, the first time he's made such a promise. https://t.co/br4nQKVR3n pic.twitter.com/puR4MFOAAo
— CNN International (@cnni) November 14, 2022
Bezos Earth Fund is fighting climate change
Bezos has refrained from setting a target amount to give away in his lifetime and has committed ten billion dollars over ten years or about eight percent of his current net worth to the Bezos Earth Fund, committed to fighting climate change and protecting nature.
He also explained why he handed Dolly Parton a hundred million dollars for her “love and compassion in work,” announcing the prize on Friday.
He said, “Look at what she’s done and how she’s led her life. The way she’s done it is by doing bold things, always with civility and kindness.”
“She’s a unifier,” he asserted. “We have big problems in the world and the way big problems are dealt with is you have to work together.”
Parton, in a video clip of the ceremony posted online, said: “Wow! Did you say $100 million?
“I think people who are in a position to help should put their money where their heart is,” she said. “I will do my best to do good things with this money.”
Parton, 76, a county, pop, and gospel singer-songwriter, whose songs include, “I Will Always Love You,” “Jolene,” and many other hits over the decades, has been a longtime philanthropist.
She donated one million dollars to Vanderbilt University’s Medical Center to help develop a vaccine during the COVID-19 pandemic.