- Jeff Bezos said that seeing Earth from the edge of space gave him a new perspective.
- The world looked “so finite and so fragile” from above, he said at the UN’s COP26 conference.
- Bezos was one of four passengers aboard Blue Origin’s first human spaceflight in July.
Jeff Bezos said his trip to the edge of space earlier this year gave him a new perspective on the planet.
Speaking Tuesday at the United Nations’ annual climate change conference, known as COP26, Bezos described viewing Earth from aboard his space company Blue Origin’s New Shepard spacecraft, which launched Bezos and three other passengers skyward in July in its first human spaceflight.
“I was told that seeing Earth from space changes the lens through which you view the world. But I was not prepared for just how much that would be true,” Bezos said. “Looking back at Earth from up there, the atmosphere seems so thin, the world so finite and so fragile.”
Bezos added that “we must all stand together to protect our world.”
"Looking back at Earth from up there, the atmosphere seems so thin, the world so finite and so fragile"
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos tells delegates at #COP26 that his trip to space changed his perspective, urging leaders to "protect our world"
— Bloomberg (@business) November 2, 2021
On Monday, Bezos pledged $2 billion via the Bezos Earth Fund to help make food supplies more sustainable and restore landscapes in Africa and the US. He called deforestation “a profound and urgent danger to us all” and said that in many parts of the world, “nature is already flipping from carbon sink to a carbon source.”
Bezos launched the Earth Fund in February 2020. The $10 billion fund doles out grants to individuals and organizations that are working to “preserve and protect the natural world,” he said at the time. Bezos said when he stepped down from the helm of Amazon earlier this year that he would be devoting more time to his philanthropic endeavors, including the Earth Fund.
But Bezos is also being criticized for arriving at COP26 aboard his $65 million Gulfstream G650ER private jet. While he was still CEO of Amazon, he faced pressure from employees who demanded that the company do more to fight climate change. Bezos previously pledged that Amazon will be carbon-neutral by 2040.