Tech Billionaire Larry Ellison Is Helping Fund A Wildlife Preservation Center In Northern California

Oracle cofounder Larry Ellison’s latest venture doesn’t have much to do with tech.

According to the San Jose Mercury News, Ellison has teamed up with California’s Peninsula Humane Society to construct a wildlife refuge and rehabilitation center on 170 acres of land in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Though workers at the center will care for all kinds of wild animals, the breeding center will focus on local invertebrates, reptiles, and amphibians.

Breeds that haven’t gotten much attention, like Lange’s metalwork butterfly, the San Francisco garter snake and the Pacific giant salamander, will be a special focus at the proposed center, which is a reported five years in the making.

The complex will total about 80,000 square feet of space, including 50 rehabilitation enclosures, the breeding center, and a greenhouse that will grow organic food for the animals.

Ellison’s exact contribution hasn’t been disclosed, but sources told the Mercury News that it is a substantial amount. The center will cost an estimated $US50 million to construct.

“He has been very kind to this organisation. There’s not enough money for any charitable causes, and there’s even less for those involving animals,” Ken White, president of the Peninsula Humane Society, said to the Mercury News. “And among those causes, ones benefiting local wildlife are at the bottom.”

This isn’t Ellison’s first contribution to the environment. When he bought the Hawaiian island of Lanai in 2012, he told reporters that he planned to turn the island into a model for sustainable living.

He helped raise $US600,000 for the California Wildlife Center during a party he held in July, and he’s also made donations toward saving gorillas and stopping ivory poachers overseas.

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