Categories: World
| On 1 month ago

Elon Musk reacts to the director of the United Nations World Food Program’s challenge to “address world hunger.”

By Aswin Kumar

Director of the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) David Beasley told CNN a few days ago that a small group of ultra-wealthy individuals, such as Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, could help end world hunger with a fraction of their money. Thanks to a recent spike in TSLA shares, Musk’s net worth has risen to $311 billion, thus making him the world’s wealthiest person today.

Beasley asked for billionaires to “step up now, on a one-time basis” while speaking on CNN’s Connect the World with Becky Anderson. He also stated that even 2% of Musk’s present net wealth might be used to end world hunger. This equates to approximately $6 billion.

“$6 billion to help 42 million people that are literally going to die if we don’t reach them. It’s not complicated,”

the UN World Food Programme director stated.

Beasley’s words have elicited a response from Musk. In response to a tweet pointing out that the UN World Food Program raised $8.4 billion in 2020, Musk stated that if the WFP could explain how $6 billion could cure world hunger, he would be more than prepared to sell some TSLA stock right now. This is significant because Musk’s net wealth is mostly based on his controlling share in Tesla. This means Musk would have to sell TSLA stock to get $6 billion in cash, which would be taxed.

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Musk, on the other hand, had a requirement for the UN’s World Food Programme director. The Tesla CEO went on to say that the United Nations World Food Program must be open to open-source accounting in a follow-up tweet. The public would be able to see how the $6 billion would be spent and how the monies would be used to effectively end world hunger in this way.

What’s remarkable about this circumstance is that the UN WFP head didn’t say whether the $6 billion he mentioned during the CNN interview was enough to address hunger permanently or if it was just a band-aid solution. After all, $6 billion seems insignificant in the broad scheme of things to address a problem that has been for a long time.

On an annual basis, countries also spend significantly more on items like the military. The United States spent $725 billion on national defense for the fiscal year 2020. Beasley’s estimate of $6 billion to end world hunger represents only 0.8 percent of the total budget. The USS Ford, the country’s most modern aircraft carrier to date, will cost a total of $13.3 billion to build. If the UN’s World Food Programme director’s estimate is correct, ending world hunger would cost nearly half the price of a US aircraft carrier.

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Aswin Kumar

A creative science nerd! Buy me a coffee: buymeacoffee.com/aswinkumar

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