Vitalik and CryptoRelief Mobilize $100M To Combat Future Pandemics
Funding To Support Medical And Infrastructure Solutions To Combat Airborne Transmission
By: Samuel Haig •Crypto News
Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin is donating $10M to fund initiatives to combat Long Covid and defend against future pandemics.
On June 8, Buterin tweeted that he and Polygon co-founder, Sandeep Nailwal, agreed to allocate a further $100M from CryptoRelief, the COVID-19 relief organization Nailwal launched in 2021, to complete projects supported by the charity.
“Covid and future pandemics are a global problem that requires a global solution combining frontier scientific innovation and on-the-ground implementation all over the world,” Buterin said.
The remaining $90M comes from the massive stash of Shiba Inu tokens that Buterin donated to the charity after SHIB’s creators airdropped him half of the token’s supply as a marketing stunt in early 2021. Buterin burned 90% of his SHIB, worth more than $6B at the time, and sent the remaining tokens to CryptoRelief.
Buterin said the funding would support medical and infrastructure solutions, including “improving ventilation, HEPA filtering, and experimental tech like UVC irradiation” to minimize airborne disease transmission.
“We can do the work to understand, prevent, and cure (Long) Covid,” Buterin said. “And we can stop airborne pathogens with clean air the same way that we stopped cholera over 100 years ago with clean water.”
He said CryptoRelief will insist that supported initiatives open-source as much of their research as is viable.
Nailwal launched CryptoRelief in April 2021 to fund COVID relief efforts throughout India. He said that Buterin encouraged him to continue investing in projects that could ease future pandemics last year, leading him to allocate further funds.
Nailwal said he is “very happy” with the results from the projects so far, but further funding is needed to complete their research. He added that CryptoRelief still holds more than $200M in its treasury to fund initiatives in India. He hopes the funds will “have a large impact on medical research capabilities” in India to defend against future pandemics.