Bill Gates mingles at COP26 event after toasting his birthday on superyacht with Jeff Bezos


Microsoft founder Bill Gates was seen mingling with world leaders including the Prime Minister of India at a ‘clean technology’ event at the Cop26 climate summit today, just days after toasting his 66th birthday with Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos on his $2million-a-week rental superyacht. 

The US businessman-turned-philanthropist met with Narendra Modi, Israeli premier Naftali Bennett, the Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina, and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen today and yesterday, during the UN-run conference in Glasgow.

He also met President Joe Biden on the sidelines, and could be seen grinning as UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson revealed that the pair had agreed to spend £400million in a bid to solve the ‘problems of low-carbon aviation’ during the Accelerating Clean Energy Innovation and Deployment event this afternoon. 

Mr Gates and Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos have both been branded eco-hypocrites for lecturing the world on the need to combat the climate crisis by reducing carbon footprint – while at the same time reportedly vacationing off the coast of Turkey together on Mr Gates’s rental superyacht ‘Lana’. Superyachts emit 7,020 tons of carbon dioxide per year, or 19 tons per day.

Mr Bezos, now the richest man on the planet, flew into Glasgow on his $65million Gulf Stream private jet on Monday. The Amazon boss – who regularly lectures the world on climate change – reached Mr Gates’s boat by helicopter, according to reports. 

It is unclear when Mr Gates arrived at Cop26, and his method of transport. However, his superyacht was seen on Tuesday anchored off the coast of Mugla, a province in southwestern Turkey. MailOnline has contacted Mr Gates’s representatives for comment.  

Mr Gates – once the richest man on earth who has dropped to fourth on the Forbes Rich List ranking with $124billion – transported his birthday guests by helicopter from his yacht to the Sea Me Beach club in Fethiye. The jet fuel used to power helicopters emits 21.095 pounds of carbon dioxide per gallon burned, and helicopters travel approximately 10.75 miles per gallon.

Details of Mr Gates’s meetings have not been fully published. However, the Microsoft founder and Mr Bennett agreed to establish a working group between the State of Israel and the Gates Foundation in the area of climate change innovation, The Times of Israel reported. 

‘Israel is known as the startup nation, and I think that it’s time we pivot and channel our national energy – which is the energy of the people, the brainpower – to fighting climate change,’ Mr Bennett told Mr Gates during their meeting. ‘We’re going to take this as a national mission.’ 

Bill Gates arriving for the "Accelerating Clean Technology Innovation and Deployment" event at Cop26 in Glasgow

Bill Gates arriving for the ‘Accelerating Clean Technology Innovation and Deployment’ event at Cop26 in Glasgow

Mr Gates (front, second right) seen standing for a photograph with leaders including US President Joe Biden (front, centre)

Mr Gates (front, second right) seen standing for a photograph with leaders including US President Joe Biden (front, centre)

It is unclear when Mr Gates arrived at Cop26, and his method of transport. However, his $2million-a-week rental yacht 'Lana' was seen on Tuesday anchored off the coast of Mugla, a province in southwestern Turkey on the Aegean Sea

It is unclear when Mr Gates arrived at Cop26, and his method of transport. However, his $2million-a-week rental yacht ‘Lana’ was seen on Tuesday anchored off the coast of Mugla, a province in southwestern Turkey on the Aegean Sea 

Pictured: Jeff Bezos' superyacht, the 'Flying Fox', is seen anchored off the shore of Mugla, Turkey, earlier today. Superyachts emit 7,020 tons of carbon dioxide per year, or 19 tons per day

Pictured: Jeff Bezos’ superyacht, the ‘Flying Fox’, is seen anchored off the shore of Mugla, Turkey, earlier today. Superyachts emit 7,020 tons of carbon dioxide per year, or 19 tons per day

Mr Bezos' Gulf Stream has led a 400-strong parade of private jets into COP26, including scores of royals and dozens of 'green' CEOs - amid an extraordinary traffic jam which forced empty planes to fly 30 miles to find space to park

Mr Bezos’ Gulf Stream has led a 400-strong parade of private jets into COP26, including scores of royals and dozens of ‘green’ CEOs – amid an extraordinary traffic jam which forced empty planes to fly 30 miles to find space to park

Mr Gates shaking hands with Naftali Bennett, the Prime Minister of Israel, at Cop26 on Tuesday

Mr Gates shaking hands with Naftali Bennett, the Prime Minister of Israel, at Cop26 on Tuesday

Mr Gates meeting with Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India, at Cop26 on Tuesday

Mr Gates meeting with Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India, at Cop26 on Tuesday

Mr Gates meeting with Sheikh Hasina, the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, at Cop26 on Monday

Mr Gates meeting with Sheikh Hasina, the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, at Cop26 on Monday

Mr Gates could even be seen grinning as Boris Johnson revealed that he brokered a £400million deal with the UK Prime Minister in a bid to solve the 'problems of low-carbon aviation' at the Accelerating Clean Energy Innovation and Deployment event on Tuesday afternoon

Mr Gates could even be seen grinning as Boris Johnson revealed that he brokered a £400million deal with the UK Prime Minister in a bid to solve the ‘problems of low-carbon aviation’ at the Accelerating Clean Energy Innovation and Deployment event on Tuesday afternoon

Mr Gates arriving for the "Accelerating Clean Technology Innovation and Deployment" event

Mr Gates arriving for the ‘Accelerating Clean Technology Innovation and Deployment’ event

Who has Bill Gates met at Cop26 in Glasgow? 

Microsoft founder Bill Gates is one of many famous faces attending the Cop26 summit in Glasgow.

The US businessman-turned-philanthropist has long warned about the climate crisis and is likely to be meeting global leaders to help developing economies reduce carbon output and ‘go green’.

Here is what we know about his itinerary so far:

Tuesday, November 2

Mr Gates met with Narendra Modi, the Indian Prime Minister, Israeli premier Naftali Bennett, the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina, and EU Commission President Ursula Von Der Leyen.

Full details of their discussions are not available. However, Mr Modi’s official Twitter account posted that the two men met on the sidelines of the summit ‘to discuss ways to further sustainable development and steps to mitigate climate change’. 

The Times of Israel reported Mr Gates and Mr Bennett’s exchanges more fully, saying the pair had agreed to establish a working group between the State of Israel and the Gates Foundation in the area of climate change innovation. 

Monday, November 1 

It is not known what Mr Gates and Ms Hasina discussed. However, in her address to Cop26, the Prime Minister of Bangladesh called on the developed countries to set ambitious targets to cut carbon emissions, and urged the industrialised nations to fulfil their pledge to provide $100billion annually to help the poorer nations adapt to and mitigate the adverse impacts of climate change. 

It is thought that Mr Gates arrived in Glasgow on Monday, after Mr Bezos’s private jet was seen flying into Glasgow. It is not confirmed if the Microsoft co-founder flew into Scotland, though his $2million-a-week rental yacht ‘Lana’ was seen on Tuesday anchored off the coast of Mugla, southwestern Turkey.

Friday, October 29

Mr Gates threw a birthday party for exclusive guests including Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos on his yacht off the coast of Turkey, according to reports.  

Mr Gates reportedly told the Israeli premier that ‘my big belief is that we can solve climate change if we accelerate innovation’. Speaking about innovation, he added: ‘That’s really what Israel is known for, but not so much in the climate space. 

‘We were thinking: How do we connect up and find more people who are doing mitigation type innovation, more people doing adaptation? Given the talent that you have and what we’ve seen in the digital space, how do we unleash more of that? So I’d love to take that R&D innovation push and figure out where Israel can partner with us.’ 

Mr Gates was last seen in the UK meeting the Queen at a reception for international business and investment leaders at Windsor Castle to mark the Global Investment Summit on October 19. Earlier that day, he spoke to the Prime Minister at the Science Museum, where the UK leader vowed to make Britain the ‘Qatar of hydrogen’ and asked industry leaders to commit funding to decarbonising the world economy – insisting ‘green is good, green is right’. 

Mr Johnson and Mr Gates announced that the Breakthrough Energy Catalyst will match that £200million funding over 10 years to help develop the cutting-edge technologies.

The Prime Minister said: ‘It will help to bring innovative technologies to market globally, while building new skills and creating high-quality jobs across the UK.’

Mr Gates said the partnership would ‘accelerate the deployment of these critical climate solutions, helping to make them more affordable and accessible’.

It comes after Leonardo DiCaprio was revealed as the latest American A-lister and eco-activist to arrive in Scotland for Cop26 today, but appeared to have shunned a private jet to get there after previous criticism about his heavy carbon footprint.

The megastar, 46, who now describes himself on social media as an ‘actor and environmentalist’, was mobbed as he arrived at the Glasgow SEC Centre at around Midday.

He was swept into the building by police and bodyguards just as President Biden and Mr Johnson appeared together at an event where they shared their vision for a ‘Build Back Better World’ and the need to invest trillions in fighting climate change and creating millions of green jobs.

Wearing sunglasses and a smart suit with matching mask, Leo, a good friend of Greta Thunberg, was flanked by security through big crowds as he entered the conference centre having reportedly flown into Edinburgh via London on commercial planes before heading to Scotland’s largest city yesterday.

This afternoon he headed to the Kew Carbon Garden at the UN climate change conference, backing The Royal Botanic Gardens’ campaign to protect the Ebo Forest in Cameroon from logging, which is threatening endangered species, including its population of rare chimpanzees.

Mr DiCaprio, who is expected to speak at various fringe events at the conference, flew into the UK after he was spotted celebrating Halloween in LA and then holidaying in Hawaii for the week before that.

His decision to shun a private jet came after he was called an eco-hypocrite in the past for his use of VIP planes. In 2016 it emerged the Oscar-winner flew 8,000 miles from France to New York and back to accept an award on climate change.

The Wolf of Wall Street actor first popped up last night at a fringe event hosted by environmentalists at The Engine Works venue in Glasgow’s Maryhill district, in the north of the city. 

Mr Gates listening during the "Accelerating Clean Technology Innovation and Deployment" event at the Cop26

Mr Gates listening during the ‘Accelerating Clean Technology Innovation and Deployment’ event at the Cop26

Mr Gates attending day three of Cop26 in Glasgow

2021 sees the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference

Mr Gates attending day three of Cop26 in Glasgow. 2021 sees the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference

Jeff Bezos sparked a backlash online after flying to Glasgow in a private jet to deliver a speech about climate change 

Prime Minister Boris Johnson appears on stage in conversation with businessman Bill Gates during the Global Investment Summit at the Science Museum in London on October 19, 2021

Prime Minister Boris Johnson appears on stage in conversation with businessman Bill Gates during the Global Investment Summit at the Science Museum in London on October 19, 2021

Mr Gates meeting the Queen during a reception for international business and investment leaders at Windsor Castle to mark the Global Investment Summit on October 19, 2021

Mr Gates meeting the Queen during a reception for international business and investment leaders at Windsor Castle to mark the Global Investment Summit on October 19, 2021

Pictured: A map showing Mr Bezos’ journeys on Friday in Turkey (bottom-left) and from Turkey to Glasgow on Sunday (main).  The Blue Origin founder is said to have made the 120-mile round trip journey by chopper from Gokova to the resort town of Fethiye on Friday. The jet fuel used to power helicopters emits 21.095 pounds of carbon dioxide per gallon burned. Since helicopters use up approximately 10.75 miles per gallon, Bezos’ helicopter emitted some 215 pounds of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. On Sunday, he then flew the roughly 2,000 miles from Gokova

Jeff Bezos is accused of being a climate hypocrite for lecturing COP26 about cutting emissions and how going to space made him realise ‘how thin the globe’s atmosphere’ is after flying in on his £48million private jet 

Amazon tycoon Jeff Bezos has been accused of hypocrisy after telling world leaders that going to space made him realise ‘how thin the globe’s atmosphere is’ and ‘the private sector must also play its part to reduce carbon emissions’.

The billionaire has been criticised by Prince William among others for the amount of fossil fuel that space exploration consumes – and arrived at the UN climate change summit in his private jet, fresh from celebrating Microsoft founder Bill Gates’ 66th birthday on a superyacht off the coast of Turkey.

Speaking today, billionaire Mr Bezos, who earlier this year made a short journey to space in the first crewed flight of his rocket ship, New Shepard, pledged $2billion for land restoration in Africa, paid as part of the Bezos Earth Fund.

He told delegates: ‘I was told that seeing the Earth from space changes the lens through which you see the world. But I was not prepared for how much that would be true.

‘Looking back at earth from up there, the atmosphere seems so thin. The world so finite and so fragile. Now in this critical year, and what we all know is the decisive decade, we must all stand together to protect our world.’

Nadia Whittome, Labour MP for Nottingham East, was among Mr Bezos’s critics today, calling him a ‘hypocrite’ and writing: ‘Amazon has a carbon footprint larger than most countries.’

Leo posed with Emmy nominated writer and producer Paul Goodenough and held a copy of his new climate change book: ‘The Most Important Comic Book on Earth: Stories to Save the World’. Mr Goodenough shared a picture of them together with the caption: ‘What a hero’, and told his Instagram followers: ‘He was wonderful and we chatted for ages despite everyone wanting a piece of him’.

Dozens of world leaders, business chiefs and eco-activists faced allegations of hypocrisy yesterday for taking private jets or domestic flights to Glasgow while telling the rest of the world to cut their carbon footprint. Culprits included billionaire Mr Bezos, Mr Biden and Mr Johnson.

Hours after telling delegates at Cop26 that the conference ‘can and must mark the beginning of the end’ of the climate change catastrophe, Mr Johnson admitted he would fly home to London from Glasgow rather than travel by rail.  

Prince Charles himself was among those who travelled by non-commercial plane after attending the G20 summit in Rome. However, a spokesman for Clarence House said the flight made use of ‘sustainable aviation fuel’.

As well as taking hundreds of carbon-polluting private flights since Sunday, VIPs will take advantage of electric vehicles – many of which will be charged by large generators which belch out nitrogen oxides because of a lack of charging provisions.

Critics said the move showed a ‘complete lack of preparedness for the wholesale switch away from fossil fuel cars that we require’.  

President Biden addressed the summit claiming the US ‘would lead by the power of example’ in the fight against climate change – after driving from Edinburgh to Glasgow in a 20-car motorcade.

Mr Biden arrived in Edinburgh yesterday on Air Force One, and was accompanied by three other planes and the Marine One helicopter.

On landing, an enormous motorcade including ‘the Beast’ presidential vehicle, a number of Range Rovers and Chevrolet SUVs carried the presidential party to Glasgow’s Scottish Event Campus.

If all the vehicles are petrol-run, estimates show they will have pumped out 360kg of carbon over the 40-mile journey. It is estimated the entire journey for the President could generate up to 2.2million pounds of carbon.

Prince Albert of Monaco and representatives from the Bank of America also used private jets to fly to the conference, while the likes of German chancellor Angela Merkel and French president Emmanuel Macron made use of official government aircraft.

It was estimated that as many as 400 private jets arrived for the conference. Conservative predictions suggest the fleet would emit 13,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide in total – equivalent to the amount emitted by more than 1,600 Britons in a year. Many arrived from cities such as London, Stockholm, Rome and Brussels, which are served by commercial routes.

Labour’s environment spokesman Luke Pollard said world leaders should be ‘leading by example.’

‘People have sympathy for world leaders flying in from the other side of the world but those coming domestically should be coming by train,’ he said. ‘The idea the Prime Minister will fly home from Cop26 after flying from London to Cornwall for the G7 smacks of being out-of-touch.

Speaking today, billionaire Mr Bezos, who earlier this year made a short journey to space in the first crewed flight of his rocket ship, New Shepard, said he had gained new perspective

Speaking today, billionaire Mr Bezos, who earlier this year made a short journey to space in the first crewed flight of his rocket ship, New Shepard, said he had gained new perspective

Mr DiCaprio looked dapper in sunglasses, a blue mask, a matching suit and a white suit as he arrived for the two week conference. He is yet to speak publicly in Scotland but is expected to give a speech

Mr DiCaprio looked dapper in sunglasses, a blue mask, a matching suit and a white suit as he arrived for the two week conference. He is yet to speak publicly in Scotland but is expected to give a speech

The actor, who also describes himself as an environmentalist, removed his sunglasses as he was surrounded by security

The actor, who also describes himself as an environmentalist, removed his sunglasses as he was surrounded by security

Mr DiCaprio hinted that he was going to attend in a series of tweets at the weekend but it was not known when he would show up

Mr DiCaprio hinted that he was going to attend in a series of tweets at the weekend but it was not known when he would show up

‘In terms of Mr Bezos, if you want to have credibility in the debate, you have to not only be decarbonising your company, you should be demonstrating your commitment with your own actions, especially when you are one of the richest people on the planet.’

Greg Archer, UK director of the Transport and Environment campaign group, said: ‘Business leaders and heads of state flying into the climate talks on private jets illustrates how totally out of touch they are with public opinion to urgently tackle the climate emergency.

‘These jets cause as much heating of the planet during a three-hour return flight than the average Brit does in a year.’

Asked why Mr Johnson was not taking the train, the Prime Minister’s Official Spokesman said he faced ‘significant time constraints’.

The spokesman said the jet used by the PM this week produces half the emissions of his normal official plane, partly because of the use of ‘sustainable’ jet fuel. Carbon emissions relating to the flight will be ‘offset’ through schemes such as tree planting.

The spokesman defended the sight of hundreds of private jets flying in, saying it was important for leaders to meet face to face for such important talks.



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