Bill Gates is letting college students download his climate-change book for free

Bill Gates wants more college students to read his latest book, so he’s letting them do it for free.

For the rest of this week, college or university students can download a free digital copy of Gates’ best-selling book, “How to Avoid a Climate Disaster: The Solutions We Have and the Breakthroughs We Need,” the billionaire Microsoft co-founder wrote in a blog post on Monday. 

In his 384-page book, which debuted on The New York Times’ nonfiction best-seller list in February 2021, Gates tackles the climate crisis while suggesting ways for research and innovation in green technology to help prevent a worldwide catastrophe.

Now, the book is available to download from Gates’ personal blog, GatesNotes. Students need to provide their email address and the name of their school to download Gates’ book as a “.epub” file for e-reader apps, according to a press release.

In his post, Gates wrote that the passion he sees from young people fighting climate change is “one of the main reasons” he penned the book in the first place.

“Young people are holding their governments accountable and insisting that they commit to eliminating their carbon emissions,” Gates wrote. “As a result, they’re making those commitments. Now what we need is a plan for getting to zero [carbon emissions]. That’s what I put forward in my book.”

The offer’s exact end date was not specified in the press release or on GatesNotes, which did not immediately respond to CNBC Make It’s request for clarification.

Gates has made plenty of headlines recently, from his recent high-profile divorce to reports that he stepped down from Microsoft’s board of directors last year following an affair with an employee.

That hasn’t stopped the billionaire philanthropist from promoting his book, which pushes proposals for achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions around the world by 2050, including developing new zero-emission energy technologies and reducing the costs of some existing renewable energy sources.

The book also includes recommendations for the average person, like grassroots activism and using your spending power to buy sustainable products.

“Getting to zero emissions will be the hardest thing people have ever done,” Gates wrote on his blog. But, he added, he believes in the enthusiasm of young people, who will “need to play a special role” in meeting that challenge.

“In my experience, they’re the ones with the most new ideas, and the most energy to pursue them,” Gates wrote.

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