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Thursday, June 20, 2024

Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk or Bill Gates: who is the environmental billionaire who pollutes the most?

A study reveals that a rich person is able to leave a footprint on the planet thousands of times stronger than the average person. Who is the richest eco-sustainable? And who instead preaches well, but scratches badly?

The challenge is almost always between the three of them, Bill Gates, Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos , even when it comes to sustainability. Environmentalism is (finally) in fashion. The great echo of the battle against climate change that marked the success of Fridays for future – and consequently also of Greta Thunberg – has also reached the heights of the global elite of wealth with Bill Gates, Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos at the forefront of defend the environment . A trio of billionaires who are able to accumulate wealth of 520 billion dollars, playing to chase each other and to overcome the top of the ranking of the richest on earth. But despite claims of eco-sustainability, several recent studies have shown that a rich person contributes more to the climate crisis than an ordinary person. So among these three champions of renewable energy, who has the lowest carbon footprint? To find out, two anthropologists from Indiana University, based in the United States, conducted a study to understand how wealth translates into pollution, finding that a billionaire is able to leave a footprint on the planet thousands of times more. to that of the average American.

According to the study, to win in this very personal challenge would be the founder of Tesla, Paypal and SpaceX with a footprint behind 2084 tons of carbon dioxide per year, followed by the former owner of Amazon with 2224 tons and, finally, Gates with a peak of 7493 tons . To arrive at this figure, the scientists analyzed the resources available to billionaires, converting flights on private jets, travel on yachts and the average consumption of villas and buildings into greenhouse gas emissions , inserting into the equation also the progress made in terms of eco-sustainability by the respective companies. 

To bust the ranking against the Microsoft founder was the mega-villa built in Medina, Washington and cost 127 million dollars: the house covers 6131 square meters, has a garage capable of holding 23 luxury cars, a cinema hall for 20 people and 24 bathrooms. If we add another 5 mega-villas, a horse farm, four private jets, a seaplane and a collection of helicopters, it is clear that from an environmental point of view this translates into a disadvantage. But Gates is certainly not the worst : analyzing the 2095 billionaires of the Forbes 2020 ranking, the owner of Chelsea, Roman Abramovich , managed to total 33859 tons of greenhouse gas emissions in 2018 alone., two thirds of which are attributable to the various yachts that moor in the most luxurious ports on the planet. 

In short, although the percentage of emissions calculated on the assets of Musk and Bezos is still hundreds of times higher than that of an ordinary person, they are still to be considered decidedly lower than the average of the other scroungers on the planet, proving to follow up their environmental theses also away from the media spotlight. 

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