UN responds to Elon Musk's $6 billion dare, lays out plan to tackle world hunger
- UN official David Beasley asked billionaires like Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk to use a fraction of their net worth to end hunger
- Musk challenged the World Food Programme chief over the claim
- WFP President David Beasley on Monday responded with a plan
Elon Musk, the richest person in the world, had challenged the United Nations to demonstrate to him how $6 billion of his fortune might be used to alleviate world hunger. On Monday, the UN responded with a plan.
The World Food Programme (WFP), the UN's food-assistance division, outlined how $6.6 billion in investments may prevent 42 million people in 43 countries from starving. In a tweet outlining the plan, WFP President David Beasley singled out Musk.
"This hunger crisis is urgent, unprecedented, AND avoidable. @elonmusk, you asked for a clear plan & open books. Here it is!" Beasley said. "We're ready to talk with you - and anyone else - who is serious about saving lives."
Musk challenged the World Food Programme late last month to explain how $6 billion could end world hunger. He claimed he would "sell Tesla shares right now and do it" provided the organisation could explain how the money would be spent.
Musk's challenge was in reaction to Beasley's CNN interview, in which he asked billionaires like Musk and Amazon founder Jeff Bezos to contribute $6 billion — a modest sum in comparison to their great riches — to save millions of people from starvation.
Beasley had responded to Musk's tweet by saying that while $6 billion will not end world hunger, it will "prevent geopolitical instability, mass migration, and save 42 million people on the verge of famine." He went on to say that the world was facing an unparalleled catastrophe as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, conflict, and climate change.
Beasley assured Musk in a recent tweet that WFP has a "system in place for transparency and open source accounting." He also stated that Musk's team may analyse and collaborate with WFP for further satisfaction.
The World Food Programme's proposal, titled "A one-time appeal to billionaires," explains how billions contributed by the world's wealthiest individuals may be spent to combat hunger. Among other things, it contains $3.5 billion for food and delivery and $2 billion for cash and food vouchers.