GB News: Expert discusses Bezos’ plans for orbiting business park

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The Amazon founder started his speech at the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow by telling world leaders about how “fragile” the Earth is. He referenced his trip with Blue Origin to suborbital space in July as a first-hand experience to it. Mr Bezos said he “was not prepared” to learn this, before outlining how it had inspired him to help fight global warming.

He said: “We must all stand together to protect our world.

“That’s why last month, in New York, nine organisations announced $5billion to support the goal of 30 by 30 – to protect 30 percent of all land and sea by 2030.

“I was honoured to be a part of this with a $1billion pledge from the Bezos Earth Fund.

“Today, I’m pleased to announce a $2billion pledge allocated directly to restoring nature and transforming food systems.

“It is part of the Bezos Foundation’s $10billion commitment to fighting climate change.”

But his speech does not appear to have gone down how he had planned, sparking furious outbursts online.

Political commentator Paul Waugh said: “Bezos says that ‘when I was in space’ earlier this year he realised just how thin the globe’s atmosphere was.

“Think he forgot to mention just how many fossil fuels he spent getting into space.”

Twitter user @Freealba2 added: “Jeff Bezos at COP lecturing people that they need to reduce their carbon footprint.

“This is the guy who was in space a couple of weeks ago.”

And Mark O’Connell stated: “Shame that Jeff Bezos had to waste billions of dollars getting to space to realise those billions could have been spent on saving the planet.

His company, Blue Origin, has successfully sent eight other people into space with its New Shepard suborbital flights.

They include Star Trek actor William Shatner, 90, who became the oldest person in space.

Space tourism, and Mr Bezos, have already come under fire.

Professor Mike Berners-Lee, the author of There is No Planet B, previously told GMB: “If you’re going to have that much money then it’s a decision to take on more responsibility for the custodianship of the world.

“With that wealth becomes a responsibility.

“One or two of the world’s richest people are making a serious effort to push billions into serious efforts.

“But if you wanted to put your space billions into the most environmentally destructive cause you could, space tourism would be it.

“In space tourism, it turns out to be a carbon footprint of, every minute, one astronaut is burning through the average Briton’s annual carbon footprint.

“That’s per minute. So it’s a huge carbon footprint.

“It’s not the direct emissions of the spacecraft, but because of the emissions that take place to create the fuel.”

But not everyone agrees.

Dr Martin Archer, a Space Physicist at Imperial College London, said: “A lot of people don’t realise that a lot of the fuels that we use to send rockets into space actually don’t create any CO2 at all.

“One of the main ones just combines hydrogen and oxygen, so what you see coming out of the rocket is actually just water vapour.

“The carbon footprint of space travel is not huge.

“I would say to Mike, we’re not planning to send people to other planets – that’s not the purpose of space tourism.

“All of the evidence that we have from climate change comes from putting things into space.

“By having a private company they are passing information on to the likes of NASA – that only helps with the research in combatting climate change.”

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