Bill Gates shops for 'sustainable farm' in Turkey aboard superyacht
Bill Gates shops for ‘hundreds of acres of farmland’ to create ‘sustainable farm in Turkey’ from aboard his $2 million-a-week rental yacht after celebrating lavish 66th birthday party with Jeff Bezos
- The Microsoft founder reportedly wants to create a sustainable farm in Turkey
- The shopping trip may be related to his recent $315 million pledge to help small farmers grow crops that will withstand the effects of climate change
- Gates looked at land while touring Turkey aboard a luxury superyacht last week
- He reportedly celebrated his birthday with Jeff Bezos at a coastal restaurant
- At the COP26 climate change conference, he said it would be ‘difficult’ to keep global warming under 1.5 degrees Celsius, a goal of the Paris Agreement
Billionaire Bill Gates reportedly shopped for ‘hundreds of acres of farmland’ in Turkey while vacationing aboard a superyacht that emits an estimated 19 tons of CO2 a day before heading to the climate change conference in Scotland.
The Microsoft founder, worth $138 billion according to Forbes, surveyed the land while he was on a trip to Turkey for his 66th birthday last week, where he celebrated alongside Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and toured the coast on a gas-guzzling vessel.
‘He wants to create a large sustainable farm in Turkey,’ a source told the New York Post.
Gates, 66, is already the largest farmland owner in the US with about 242,000 acres in 18 states.
Bill Gates reportedly shopped for ‘hundreds of acres of farmland’ while on a trip to Turkey for his birthday last week
Gates, the world’s fourth richest man, toured the coast on the 107-meter-long LANA, above, a superyacht that likely emits 19 tons of CO2 per day
The tech entrepreneur and philanthropist has drawn criticism for his lavish lifestyle, which contributes to global carbon emissions at many times the rate of the average person, as he champions eco-friendly initiatives.
Gates reportedly shuttled Bezos and 50 guests from the massive LANA yacht to a restaurant in the Turkish city of Fethiye via helicopter for his birthday party last Thursday.
He had been vacationing off the coast of Turkey aboard the yacht for more than a week, according to the Post and Turkish newspaper Hürriyet.
The 107-meter-long LANA boasts a master bedroom, seven VIP ‘staterooms,’ a cinema room, and a large pool on a sundeck, according to Imperial Yachts in Monaco, which rents the vessel for $2,110,500 a week.
Last week, Gates and about 50 guests, including Jeff Bezos, were flown via helicopter from the LANA to the Sea Me Beach in Turkey’s southwestern province of Muğla’s Fethiye district
Gates celebrated his birthday at the restaurant for about four hours, according to local media
Gates is currently at the COP26 climate change conference in Glasgow and does not appear to have flown back to Turkey.
Representatives for Gates and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation did not immediately respond to requests for comment from DailyMail.com.
On Tuesday, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced that it was pledging $315 million ‘to help hundreds of millions of smallholder farmers adapt to a surge of climate threats now imperiling the global fight against hunger and poverty.’
Its total commitment to CGIAR, formerly the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research, now stands at about $1 billion.
‘With this new pledge, CGIAR – which has been delivering high-impact solutions to farmers in low-income countries for 50 years – has secured over half a billion dollars in 2021 to develop a wide array of climate-smart innovations, like stress-tolerant crop varieties, climate forecasting services and new strategies for restoring degrading lands to improve productivity,’ the Gates foundation said.
Last week’s trip to Turkey, where Gates reportedly looked at land, was his second time visiting the country in four months, according to the pro-government Daily Sabah newspaper.
Rumors swirled that he allegedly bought 22,000 acres in the Thrace region. His intentions to buy land momentarily raised prices, according to the newspaper.
‘Landowners hoping to cash in on the opportunity are trying to sell their land at exorbitant prices, in particular to Turks abroad, with some listing up to 8,000 euro ($9,658.32) per parcel,’ the Turkish newspaper reported.
Speaking with UK lawmaker Jeremy Hunt, Gates said he doubts the world will be able to meet the Paris Agreement’s goal of keeping global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
‘It’s all a matter of degrees, so to speak. That is, you know, hitting 2.5 is better than hitting 3, hitting 2 is better than hitting 2.5,’ he said, according to video posted by Hunt on Twitter.
‘1.5 … will be very difficult, I doubt that we’ll be able to achieve that.’
He added that there was ‘no comparable feat that mankind has ever achieved to what we need to do for climate change,’ but admitted that people as a whole are ‘much richer today, far more knowledgeable today – we do have the digital tools that enable us to work on these things.
‘What happened with solar panels, where they were very expensive and now they’re cheap, or lithium ion batteries, we need to do that for about six other technologies.’
Gate’s purchases in Turkey would add to an already impressive land portfolio.
The tech billionaire has quietly bought up 242,000 acres of farmland in 18 states – and 268,984 of multi-use land in 19 states in total, making him the biggest agricultural landowner in the US
In 2014, Gates reportedly purchased more than 4,500 acres in Suwannee County, Florida, for nearly $28 million
In 2018, a ‘Louisiana investor,’ later revealed to be Gates, paid $171 million for a swath of farmland in the Horse Heaven Hill, one of the largest real estate purchases in recent memory
His largest holdings in the US include 69,071 acres in Louisiana, 47,927 acres in Arkansas, 25,750 acres in Arizona, 20,588 acres in Nebraska and 16,097 in Washington state.
But even then, Gates still doesn’t rank in the Top 100 of private landowners overall in the U.S. – when considering owners of land of all types, not just agricultural.
The title for largest landholdings overall goes to US businessman John Malone, chairman of Liberty Media, who owns 2.2million acres.
Gates and Bezos have both been branded eco-hypocrites for lecturing the world on the need to combat the climate crisis by reducing carbon footprints, while at the same time vacationing off the coast of Turkey together on Gates’s rental superyacht ‘Lana’.
Superyachts emit 7,020 tons of carbon dioxide per year, or 19 tons per day.
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Gates have been criticized for their lavish lifestyle while championing climate change mitigation efforts
‘A superyacht with a permanent crew, helicopter pad, submarines and pools emits about 7,020 tons of CO2 a year … making it by far the worst asset to own from an environmental standpoint,’ Richard Wilk and Beatriz Barros of the University of Indiana’s Department of Anthropology told the New York Post.
Wilk said the average person’s CO2 emissions in a year are between 5 and 10 tons.
Bezos, now the richest man on the planet, flew into Glasgow on his $65 million Gulf Stream private jet on Monday.
The Amazon boss – who regularly lectures the world on climate change – reached Gates’ boat by helicopter, according to reports.
It is unclear when Mr Gates arrived at Cop26, or what his method of transport was.
However, his superyacht was seen on Tuesday anchored off the coast of Mugla, a province in southwestern Turkey.
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