Founder of Amazon and richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos stays in Gabon

Founder of Amazon and richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos stays in Gabon

Jeff Bezos in Loango Park alongside ANPN technical director Hubert Ella Ekhoga and eco-guards Tuesday July 12, 2022 © DR

American multi-billionaire Jeff Bezos is currently staying in Gabon. His Foundation, The Bezos Earth Fund, actively supports the country in protecting its forest.

Like every summer, the great fortunes and celebrities of this world flock to Gabon. After rapper Ludachris, actor Samuel L. Jackson, football star Samuel Eto’o, it is the turn of the richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos, to go to Gabon on vacation.

Or almost. Because the founder of Amazon did not choose Gabon by chance. Through his foundation, The Bezos Earth Fund, the American multi-billionaire is very active in protecting the environment.

In December 2021, The Bezos Earth Fund had announced a donation of forty million US dollars ($40 million) offered to the NGO of Wildlife Conservation Society to protect the biodiversity of the Congo Basin and help local communities and indigenous peoples to protect the forests themselves (read our article).

Part of these funds are intended for Gabon, considered one of the most exemplary countries in this field and on the front line in the fight against global warming.

Compared to other countries in the world, annual deforestation in Gabon is low (between 0 to 0.05% per year from 2010 to 2015) and stable, which makes Gabon one of the last countries with high forest cover and low deforestation. (HFLD in English). This is due to a combination of socio-economic circumstances and deliberate political actions.

Indeed, to a low population density, high urban density (nearly 90%) and dependence on food imports rather than local agriculture are added robust forest protection measures, such as a network of 13 protected areas and growing policies to incentivize sustainable forest management and timber production practices.

Jeff Bezos “admiring and grateful” to Ali Bongo Ondimba

It was in one of them, Loango Park, recently featured in a documentary series broadcast on Netflix with the voiceover of Barack Obama (read our article), that Jeff Bezos visited yesterday, Tuesday July 12. Throughout his visit, the American billionaire was accompanied by the technical director of the National Agency for National Parks of Gabon (ANPN) and special adviser to the President of the Republic, Hubert Ella Ekogha, who is perfectly English-speaking (read our article ).

In his exchanges, “Jeff Bezos said he was admiring and grateful to President Ali Bongo Ondimba for his action to protect the forest, which is almost unprecedented in the world”. The country is indeed one of the few to be carbon negative, that is to say to produce (much) less CO2 than it emits.