Story at a glance

  • Last month, the World Food Programme (WFP) asked Elon Musk to donate 4 percent of his net worth growth from the last 18 months to help solve world hunger.
  • Musk agreed, but asked for exactly how his donation would solve world hunger.
  • On Tuesday, WFP released a breakdown of costs that explained how $6.6 billion could avert famine in 2022.

After Elon Musk agreed to sell Tesla stock to help solve world hunger, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) released a plan detailing how $6.6 billion could save 42 million people from famine.

A social media showdown began in October after David Beasley, executive director for WFP, pleaded with Musk on Twitter to make a one-time donation of $6 billion to help 42 million people currently at stage four, emergency level, of food insecurity as determined by the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification. Beasley later spoke with CNN and continued to urge the billionaire to share his wealth with those much less fortunate than him.

Musk eventually responded via tweet that if WFP could detail exactly how $6 billion could solve world hunger, “I will sell Tesla stock right now and do it.”

That time has come, with Beasley releasing on Tuesday a plan that details how $6.6 billion can avert famine in 2022.


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WFP provided a breakdown for how $6.6 billion would be spent, among food and its delivery, plain cash and food vouchers, country-specific costs to implement food programs and operational costs.

The organization warned that tens of millions of people across 43 countries are on the brink of famine. WFP’s latest estimate showed that 282.7 million people are experiencing extreme levels of acute hunger, a 110 percent increase compared to 2019 levels, fueled by widespread global conflict, climate change and economic failures from the coronavirus pandemic.

Beasley also offered transparency, linking to WFP’s financial statements, operational plans, audits and annual reports. 

It’s unclear if Musk has seen Beasley’s latest tweet with cost breakdowns, but Musk did recently sell more than $6 billion worth of Tesla stock. The sale came after he posted a poll on Twitter asking his followers if he should sell 10 percent of his Tesla holdings.

Twitter voted yes and Musk ultimately followed through with the sale. According to CNBC, Musk still holds more than 166 million shares but his Twitter poll stock sale may not have been entirely spontaneous.

According to Securities and Exchange Commission filings, Musk had a plan set in motion in September to sell more than 930,000 shares worth more than $1.1 billion. It was meant to satisfy tax obligations related to an exercise of stock options.

What Musk plans to do now, after his significant stock sale and WFP delivering on a plan for how $6.6 billion can solve world hunger, is yet to be seen. 


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Published on Nov 16, 2021