Branson Pledges $3 Billion To Clinton Initiative


Thursday Sir Richard Branson, Chairman of the Virgin Atlantic Group pledged $3 billion over a 10-year period to the Clinton Global Initiative.

Branson essentially pledged all profits generated over the next ten years from the Virgin Group’s airline and train companies.

And what does Sir Richard hope to get for his investment?

A hand in developing renewable sustainable energy sources, particularly bio-fuel projects — in addition to working on a solution for global warming. Branson has been a vocal supporter of bio-fuel technology over the last couple of years. He has said publicly that he would like to have a hand in developing alternative fuel sources for his airplanes.

Good for Sir Richard. Just think how many chickens would have to be fried to produce enough vegetable oil to fly a 747 across the Atlantic. It’s a rather daunting thought — but probably doable. In some fashion.

This was the second year the Conference has been held. The project was started by former President Bill Clinton and seeks to bring diverse political and business entities together in seeking solutions to major world issues such as poverty, health care, religious and ethnic conflict and the environment.

You have to give Clinton credit. He apparently has Barbra Streisand and Rupert Murdoch working together on one of the Initiative’s committees.

Talk about two people with widely divergent political beliefs. For that matter the fact Murdoch and Branson were in the same room is quite an accomplishment.

Much better than anything the United Nations has been able to put together lately.

But that is what is cool about the project. The organization does work to bring together all political sides of an issue — in an attempt to find workable answers.

The Initiative, which generated $3 billion in support last year, had racked up some $6 billion in privately funded commitments — as of Thursday.