With loads of money in tow, Tim Sweeney has done something rather incredible. The Epic Games founder has been buying up land, in fact, 40,000 acres of it to preserve and protect from deforestation.
I’m sure by now, most of you will be familiar with Fortnite, an online Battle Royale style of game that has become a billion-dollar household name throughout the entire world.
Well, it’s safe to say that some of those in game purchases have gone to a rather impressive cause.
Sweeney is no new figure in wildlife preservation, in fact he has been at it for years. His latest act however caught our attention for all the right reasons.
He purchased 40,000 acres of land, donating part of it to Mount Mitchell State Park which in turn helps in protecting the area in the name of wildlife conservation. Additionally, he has gone as far as donating an additional 15 million dollars and additional land to Box Creek Wilderness, a area now falling under Sweeney’s aid.
Sweeney spoke a little bit about his reasoning behind his most recent donation, saying “It’s one of the most diverse areas in North Carolina. It has such rare plant and wildlife species, it seemed a perfect fit with the Fish and Wildlife Service. This is a first step – there will be other places protected. The goal is to connect South Mountains State Park to Chimney Rock. This is one piece of the puzzle.”
He added, “I bought this land because it has a nice long leaf pine forest and was available for a reasonable price. I’ll be holding it until I find a permanent nature conservation home for it, which will take years or decades.”
According to The Mind Unleashed:
“Sweeney’s conservation efforts come at a time when protecting our nation’s forests has become increasingly important. A study led by North Carolina State University professor Nick Haddad and conducted by 24 scientists, found that there are only 2 truly intact forests left on Earth.
“When the study’s authors examined the effects of human involvement on forests, they found habitat fragmentation leads to 13 to 75 percent decrease in plant and animal diversity, reduces the ability of animals and plants to survive and can even distort the food chain, as smaller patches of forest tend to have an increase in predator population.
The site added, “Thankfully, as science continues to learn more about the importance of undeveloped forest land, billionaire philanthropists are noticing and taking action. China’s wealthiest man has also taken note of the importance of conservation. In 2015, Jack Ma, the billionaire behind online retail giant Alibaba, purchased 28,000 acres of land in the Adirondack mountains of upstate NY. His first action taken after purchasing the land was to halt logging operations.”
As incredible as his work is, one must remember that this is a tiny piece of a huge puzzle – one we should all be working towards building.
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