Honors Jeff Bezos for His Commitment to Conservation of Nature and Fighting Climate Change
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At the Wildlife Conservation Society annual gala at Central Park Zoo, June 7, 2022. Pictured left to right: Alejandro Santo Domingo, WCS Chair; Andrew Steer, President and CEO of the Bezos Earth Fund; Charlotte Santo Domingo; Jeff Bezos, Chair of the Bezos Earth Fund; Lauren Sánchez, Vice Chair of Bezos Earth Fund; Cristián Samper WCS President and CEO. Jeff Bezos was honored for his commitment to conserving nature and fighting climate change.
New York - June 7, 2022 - The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) hosted its annual gala tonight, honoring Jeff Bezos, founder of the Bezos Earth Fund, for his commitment to conserving nature and fighting climate change.
Bezos has pledged $10 billion to fight climate change and protect and restore nature while advancing environmental justice and economic opportunity. As part of the Earth Fund’s $10 billion commitment, $3 billion will go to nature solutions to conserve what we still have, restore what we’ve lost, and transform food systems. The Bezos Earth Fund, founded in 2020, is chaired by Bezos, and Lauren Sánchez serves as vice-chair.
This commitment by the Earth Fund to conservation focuses on areas that are important for biodiversity and carbon stocks and emphasizes the central role of local communities and Indigenous Peoples. Last year, the Earth Fund was a founding organization behind the Protecting Our Planet (POP) Challenge, which aims to ensure 30 percent of the planet is protected and preserved in the most important places for biodiversity by 2030.
Said WCS Chair Alejandro Santo Domingo, “Jeff Bezos is a transformational leader galvanizing efforts to protect nature and fight the climate crisis. He understands fully that we all have a role to play protecting our Earth. His conservation and environmental efforts will help humanity ensure nature thrives for all.”
Cristián Samper, President and CEO of WCS said: “Jeff Bezos and Lauren Sánchez’s support for the Wildlife Conservation Society has helped scale our conservation efforts in the Congo Basin and Andean-Amazon countries. The Earth Fund’s support is invaluable as we address the existential threats of the climate, extinction and zoonotic health crises.”
Said Bezos: “Nature provides the oxygen we breathe, the food we eat, and the water we drink. Nature is our life support system. We simply cannot address climate change without reversing the loss of nature. It’s a great honor to receive this award from WCS, which for more than a century has been saving wildlife and wild places.”
The WCS gala, one of the premier social events in New York City, empowers guests to stand with WCS in building a world in which wildlife thrives in healthy lands and seas, valued by societies that embrace and benefit the diversity and integrity of life on Earth.
As the world’s leading wildlife conservation organization, WCS has a long track record of achieving innovative, impactful results through science, conservation action, education, and inspiring people to value nature. WCS has safeguarded the planet’s important natural strongholds over the past century, helping to create more than 325 protected areas on land and at sea.
Additionally, WCS’s network of urban wildlife parks (Bronx Zoo, Central Park Zoo, Queens Zoo, Prospect Park Zoo, New York Aquarium) is the largest in the world, connecting millions of visitors each year to nature and science.
All proceeds raised through Gala 2022 will help WCS advance conservation science, action, and education, as it has done since its founding more than 125 years ago.
Elizabeth and Lee Ainslie, Barbara and Duncan Chapman, Laura and Peter Grauer, Diane and Andreas Halvorsen, John and Jeanet Irwin, Mary and Howdy Phipps, Alejandro and Charlotte Santo Domingo, Kitty and Stephen Sherrill, Loretta and Chris Stadler, Allison and Leonard Stern, Ann and Andrew Tisch, Ward and Priscilla Woods, Akiko Yamazaki and Jerry Yang, Don and Barbara Zucker.
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About the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)
MISSION: WCS saves wildlife and wild places worldwide through science, conservation action, education, and inspiring people to value nature. To achieve our mission, WCS, based at the Bronx Zoo, harnesses the power of its Global Conservation Program in nearly 60 nations and in all the world’s oceans and its five wildlife parks in New York City, visited by 4 million people annually. WCS combines its expertise in the field, zoos, and aquarium to achieve its conservation mission. For more information, visit: wcs.org, newsroom.wcs.org. Follow us on social media: Facebook, Twitter @WCSNewsroom, and YouTube.com/user/WCSMedia. For more information: 347 840 1242.
About Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos founded Amazon.com in 1994. Amazon’s mission is to be Earth’s most customer-centric company. In 2019, under Bezos’ leadership, Amazon and Global Optimism co-founded The Climate Pledge, a commitment for companies to achieve net-zero carbon by 2040—with 300+ signatories to date and counting. In 2020, Bezos founded the Bezos Earth Fund, a $10 billion commitment to fund scientists, activists, NGOs, and others to drive climate and nature solutions in this decisive decade. Funds will be fully allocated by 2030, the date by which the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals must be achieved. He also founded the Bezos Day One Fund to provide grants to nonprofits to help homeless families and is creating a network of preschools in low-income communities. Bezos is also the founder of aerospace company Blue Origin, which is working on the long-term goal of moving all polluting and heavy industry off Earth to preserve the planet. He is the owner of the Washington Post. Bezos graduated summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa in electrical engineering and computer science from Princeton University in 1986 and was named TIME magazine’s Person of the Year in 1999.
About the Bezos Earth Fund
The Bezos Earth Fund is Jeff Bezos’ $10 billion personal commitment to fund scientists, activists, NGOs and others to help drive climate and nature solutions. By allocating funds creatively, wisely and boldly, the Bezos Earth Fund has the potential for transformative influence in this decisive decade. Funds will be fully allocated by 2030 — the date by which the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals must be achieved.
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