Elon Musk, world's richest person, to offer $100 million prize for 'this technology'
'Am donating $100M towards a prize for best carbon capture technology,' tweeted the Tesla chief
Tesla chief and billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk said he plans to donate $100 million toward a prize for the "best" carbon capture technology, weeks after he became the world's richest person.
"Details next week," he wrote in another tweet.
Musk's net worth surged in the past year, boosting him past Jeff Bezos, as the carmaker delivered consistent profits, attracted legions of retail investors and earned inclusion in the S&P 500 Index.
The South African-born entrepreneur is now worth $201.4 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Elon Musk's focus on carbon capture is in line with his other business interests, which largely focus on technological solutions to urgent environmental problems.
Capturing planet-warming emissions is becoming a critical part of many plans to keep climate change in check, but very little progress has been made on the technology to date, with efforts focused on cutting emissions rather than taking carbon out of the air.
The International Energy Agency said late last year that a sharp rise in the deployment of carbon capture technology was needed if countries are to meet net-zero emissions targets.
Musk, who co-founded and sold Internet payments company PayPal Holdings Inc, now leads some of the most futuristic companies in the world.
Besides Tesla, he heads rocket company SpaceX and Neuralink, a startup that is developing ultra-high bandwidth brain-machine interfaces to connect the human brain to computers.
Newly-sworn-in US President Joe Biden has pledged to accelerate the development of carbon capture technology as part of his sweeping plan to tackle climate change.
On Thursday, he named Jennifer Wilcox, an expert in carbon removal technologies, as the principal deputy assistant secretary for fossil energy at the US Department of Energy.
With agency inputs
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