Bill Gates responds to claims he’s “climate hypocrite”

The Microsoft Co-Founder has defended his private jet travel patterns, saying he is not “part of the problem”

Bill Gates has confronted accusations that he is a “hypocrite” as he uses his private jet while he is campaigning for technologies designed to support global efforts to tackle climate change.

In an interview with the BBC, the American entrepreneur said: “I buy the gold standard of funding Climeworks to do direct air capture that far exceeds my family’s carbon footprint.

“I spend billions of dollars on climate innovation. So, should I stay at home and not come to Kenya and learn about farming and malaria?

“I am comfortable with the idea that not only am I not part of the problem by paying for the offsets, but also through the billions that my Breakthrough Energy group is spending, that I’m part of the solution.”

Asked whether rich countries owe reparations to poorer countries for historic climate change, Bill Gates said: “The rich countries have done the bulk of emissions and the countries near the Equator are suffering the most. The rich countries should be more generous.”

A few months ago, speaking to Bloomberg’s Zero podcast the Co-Founder of Microsoft stressed the role of technological and behavioural change in combating climate change.

He said: “We need more than technology because we have to have the political will. We are asking society to stop using stuff other than climate things. We are asking society to walk away from those.

“Anyone who says that will tell people to stop eating meat or stop wanting to have a nice house and will just basically change human desires; I think that’s too difficult. You can make a case for it, but I don’t think it’s realistic for that to play absolutely central role.”

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