The headline read: “With Latest $350 Million Gift to Johns Hopkins, Bloomberg Surpasses $1 Billion in Giving to Alma Mater.”
The alma mater being Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, and the gift-giver being billionaire and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
This latest gift brings Mr. Mayor’s total giving to the university to $1 billion, with a “b.”
That total includes:
- $250 million to facilitate cross-disciplinary work across the university
- Funding to endow 50 Bloomberg Distinguished Professorships in areas such as water resource sustainability, individualized healthcare delivery, global health, the science of learning, and urban revitalization
- $100 million to provide Bloomberg Scholarships to 2,600 undergrads over the next 10 years, so that, as a news release from the Philanthrophy News Digest phrased it, “The most talented and driven students can attend the university, regardless of economic circumstance.”
Bloomberg, who earned his bachelor's degree in engineering from the university in 1964, made his first gift—a $5 donation—to the school in 1965. Since then, he’s been a devoted supporter of the university, contributing a total of $336 million in support of research projects, $289 million to the Bloomberg School of Public Health, $240 million for various capital and infrastructure projects and $219 million in support of need-based financial aid.
The majority of Hizzoner’s latest gift—about $250 million—will support the appointment of faculty in the areas of water resource sustainability, individualized health care delivery, global health, the science of learning and urban revitalization, according to news reports.
Did you notice that first item? Water resource sustainability? That’s a problem, because that’s directly tied to the ongoing accusationthat raising livestock is the prime suspect in wasting water. In fact, the Humane Society of the United States, PETA and various other anti-industry activist groups have been working in concert for years to keep pounding way at a specific stat: That each pound of beef requires 2,500 gallons of water to produce.
Just Google the phrase “water use in beef,” and you’ll immediately be hit with that figure: “The most reliable and widely accepted water estimate to produce beef . . . is the figure of 2,500 gallons a pound,” is how the assertion is typically phrased. Some sources claim that the figure is even higher.