World Hunger is a serious issue that spans the globe. According to the United Nations, in 2021, 828 million people went hungry. A big part of that is due to the coronavirus pandemic. The global pandemic affected shipping and trading across the world, leading to hunger in less developed countries. Because of this, the United Nations pulled back its expected goal of ending world hunger by 2030.
David Beasley is the current UN food program director and the former governor of South Carolina. In October of 2021, he gave an interview stating that billionaires need to use their wealth to help the planet, specifically world hunger. He also cited Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, the richest men in the world.
A month later, Beasley sent out a tweet that contains a link that contained a document on mapping out the United Nation’s plan to use $6.6 billion for meals, vouchers, and new food programs. This would feed well over 40 million people in 43 countries. These countries are facing mass hunger and famine in the near future. This money would help prevent that catastrophe.
In Beasley’s tweet, he tagged Musk, as Musk is the richest man in the world. Elon Musk was worth around $288 billion in November 2021. As of August 2022, he is worth $263 billion.
Beasley mentioned in his October 2021 interview with Elon Musk that only 2% of Musk’s net worth could end world hunger.
Musk then stated on Twitter that if the World Food Programme (WFP) can lay out a series of tweets detailing how to solve world hunger, then he will “…sell Tesla stock right now and do it.”
Musk also stated, “But it must be open source accounting, so the public sees precisely how the money is spent.” Beasley would confirm that there are systems in place to ensure complete transparency. Beasley then sent him that link.
Since Beasley sent out the tweet, Musk had not responded to it. It is also unknown if Musk or even Bezos had seen the tweet.
Later in February 2022, Fortune.com wrote an article stating that Elon Musk had gifted nearly $6 billion in Tesla shares to charity between November 19 to November 29. It was worth $5.7 billion, causing it to be one of the largest donations to a charity in history. But, the name and trust are kept secret.
Yet, it was back in November of 2021 when he sparred with politicians such as Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts. They went back and forth about wealth inequality. It was stated by Bloomberg that Musk would owe $10 billion in taxes. This is because of his many projects and companies. The gift to charity would reduce that hypothetical tax bill for Musk.
As of April 2022, Musk had not disclosed where he donated the money. Also, the WFP, or any charity for that matter, had not claimed to receive a donation from Musk.
As of now, Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos have stated nothing since then about solving world hunger. While Musk may be an ambitious man, he hasn’t put his money where his mouth is.