Soros To Make $1 Billion-Plus Commitment To Clean Energy

Oct 12 2009 | 1:21pm ET

Hedge fund billionaire George Soros is pouring more than $1 billion into a different kind of green. The Soros Fund Management chief, a well-known supporter of liberal causes, announced Saturday that he’ll invest $1 billion in clean-energy technology and found a new environmental policy group.

Soros’ announcement came in Copenhagen, Denmark, which will host negotiations toward a climate-change treaty later this year.  While Soros didn’t offer any insight into what types of cleantech companies he planned to invest, he did promise to apply “rather stringent criteria” in selecting them.

“They should be profitable but should also actually make a contribution to solving the problem,” he said.

He offered some more details about his Climate Policy Initiative, to which he pledged $100 million over the next 10 years. The new San Francisco-based group will be headed by Stanford University Law School professor Thomas Heller.

“The problem of global warming is primarily a political problem at this point,” Soros said. “The science is beyond dispute, but how do we achieve the objectives we all know are necessary? That is a political problem.”

Soros also weighed in on one of the biggest political problems in the global-warming debate, announcing he favors a carbon tax rather than a cap-and-trade system.

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