The Rockefeller Foundation announced on Monday that it would commit $1 billion, the largest single commitment in its century-long history, to help the world recover from the coronavirus pandemic.
Using its own endowment, proceeds from a bond offering, and private investments, the organization will hone-in on increasing access to coronavirus testing, vaccines, and green energy for the over 800 million people who lack access to electricity around the globe.
“There’s no going back to the past, to before-Covid. We need to reimagine the future we want,” said Foundation president Rajiv Shah in a statement. “To meet this moment, we must leverage all our resources and relationships to build an equitable, sustainable future, where everyone has the opportunity to realize their full potential and climate disaster is avoided. The time to act is right now to make sure vulnerable children and families are included in the pandemic response and recovery.”
Shah, the former head of USAID, the U.S. Agency for International Development, added to Axios that energy is essential to any form of recovery, and pointed out that the pandemic has caused 100 million people to lose their electricity due to unpaid bills.
“If you don't have reliable industrial power, you can't run businesses,” he said. “If you can't run businesses, you don't create jobs."
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