Google.org, the philanthropic organization set up by the Google founders, was given seed money of about $1 billion with the mandate to tackle poverty, disease and global warming. The organization is unlike most charities, since it is a for-profit entity. This allows Google.org to form partnerships with venture capitalists and fund start-up companies. It also means the organization will pay taxes, something most charities are exempt from.
Since one of its goals is to tackle global warming, Google.org plans to develop an ultra-efficient plug-in hybrid car that runs on ethanol, electricity and gasoline, in collaboration with hybrid-engine scientists and automakers. They also plan for the purchase of a small fleet of cars with plans to convert them to achieve 100 miles per gallon or better mileage. Dr. Larry Brilliant, the executive director of Google.org, declined to comment on the car project specifically.

[Source: The New York Times, via KickingTires]

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