Story at a glance

  • During an interview with CNN on Monday, the Amazon founder was asked about his critics who say the flights to space are just “joyrides for the wealthy.”
  • Critics have argued billionaires investing in space exploration should use their resources to solve problems on Earth.
  • “We have lots of problems in the here and now on Earth and we need to work on those, and we always need to look to the future, we’ve always done that as a species, as a civilization. We have to do both,” Bezos told CNN.

Former Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos on Monday addressed critics who say he and other billionaires like Richard Branson and Elon Musk should use their resources to help people here on Earth before blasting off into space. 

Bezos launched into space Tuesday morning as part of his aerospace company Blue Origin’s first passenger flight. 

During an interview with CNN on Monday, the Amazon founder was asked about his critics who say the flights to space are just “joyrides for the wealthy,” and that he should be spending time trying to solve problems on Earth. 

“Well, I’d say they’re largely right, we have to do both,” Bezos told CNN’s Rachael Crane. 


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“We have lots of problems in the here and now on Earth and we need to work on those, and we always need to look to the future, we’ve always done that as a species, as a civilization. We have to do both,” he said. 

“What our job at Blue Origin is to do, what this space tourism mission is about, is having a mission where we can practice so much we get really good at operational space travel,” he said. 

“If we can do that, we’ll be building a road to space for the next generations to do amazing things. And those amazing things will solve problems here on Earth,” he added. 

Bezos is set to make the trip to space with three other passengers aboard Blue Origin’s New Shepard spacecraft. 

The mission comes more than a week after Branson successfully launched into space aboard a winged rocket ship developed by his company Virgin Galactic. 


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Published on Jul 19, 2021