A recent report by Bloomberg detailed Bill Gates’ involvement in convincing Senator Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., to back President Biden and congressional Democrats’ Inflation Reduction Act, a tax and climate change bill that, according to the Wharton Budget Model and nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office will not reduce inflation. Bloomberg’s piece, titled “Bill Gates and the Secret Push to Save Biden’s Climate Bill,” was reported by Bloomberg Green, the climate change wing of Bloomberg news.
According to the report, when Manchin “slammed the brakes on legislation to combat global warming,” clean-energy investor and billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates got on the phone with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. “One of the world’s richest men felt he had to give one of the nation’s most powerful lawmakers a little pep talk,” reported Bloomberg.
“Gates was banking on more than just his trademark optimism about addressing climate change” and that he has “quietly lobbied Manchin and other senators, starting before President Joe Biden had won the White House, in anticipation of a rare moment in which heavy federal spending might be secured for the clean energy transition,” Bloomberg reported.
“Those discussions gave him reason to believe the senator from West Virginia would come through for the climate — and he was willing to continue pressing the case himself until the very end.”
Billionaire failed presidential candidate and Michael Bloomberg reported, “Gates started wooing Manchin and other senators who might prove pivotal for clean-energy policy in 2019 over a meal in Washington, D.C.” According to Bloomberg Green, the Gates foundation “has sunk at least tens of millions into green cement startups such as Ecocem, Chement, and Brimstone,” but currently, “none have yet reached commercial scale.”
Aquion, a Gates-backed startup, would benefit from the government subsidies included in the Inflation Reduction Act, according to Bloomberg. Critics argue that the legislation will harm the economy, further increase government interference in the economy to benefit some industries or others and is branded falsely.
Gates wooed senators, focused on Manchin
Gates started wooing senators, focusing on Manchin, who may prove pivotal for clean-energy policy over a 2019 meal in Washington, D.C. “My dialogue with Joe has been going on for quite a while. Almost everyone on the energy committee,” which Manchin was then the most senior Democrat, said, Gates.
The evening was centered on “The role of innovation in climate. How the U.S. was really the only country, given how quickly this needs to get done, that has that innovation power in our universities, our national labs, our risk-taking ability,” Gates recalled of the dinner discussion.
The Microsoft co-founder asserted to the senators that American innovation was needed worldwide if there was any hope of stopping climate change.
Gates’ investments through Breakaway Energy, his organization that promotes climate work, have sunk tens of millions into green cement startups. The bankruptcy filing of Aquion, a battery startup he backed, might have been able to succeed if he had received energy-storage tax credits.