They are the billionaire philanthropist and the ambitious politician who have joined forces in an attempt to lead a green revolution and save the planet from climate disaster.
But Boris Johnson and Bill Gates are also united in their complicated romantic entanglements, with the Microsoft founder currently facing claims of sexually harassing a female employee as CEO, while the Prime Minister expects his seventh child in total with his third wife Carrie.
Mr Gates, now 65, was told by top executives Brad Smith and Lisa Brummel in 2008 that flirtatious emails he had sent to a female member of staff – while he was still married to Melinda Gates – were inappropriate and that he needed to stop.
Around the time that Mr Gates’ wife Melinda petitioned for divorce, reports began to emerge about the Microsoft founder’s penchant for pursuing romantic relationships with female underlings – including that he had a sexual relationship with a different female staff member in 2002.
His daughter Jennifer, 25, said it had been ‘challenging’ planning her wedding to equestrian Nayel Nassar, 30, this weekend on her $25million horse farm in North Salem, New York while her family was ‘going through transitions.’
But the experience of divorcing parents is one that most of Mr Johnson’s children are likely to know all too well. Their 57-year-old father, the sitting Prime Minister, has six children with a seventh on the way and left his second wife Marina Wheeler for Carrie Symonds, a former Tory communications chief, while she was battling cancer. Mr Johnson and Miss Symonds had baby Wilf, one, during the first Covid lockdown and wed in secret at Westminster Cathedral in May.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson appears on stage in conversation with businessman Bill Gates during the Global Investment Summit at the Science Museum in London on October 19, 2021
Bill and Melinda Gates walk their daughter, Jennifer Gates, into her wedding on the family’s property in North Salem
Boris Johnson and Carrie Johnson arrive at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester on October 6, 2021
Mr Johnson shakes hands with Mr Gates during the Global Investment Summit at the Science Museum on October 19, 2021
‘Life with Boris had become impossible’: PM’s ex-wife Marina Wheeler speaks for first time about their 25-year marriage and her cancer battle – after he tied the knot for third time to Carrie Symonds
Boris Johnson and wife Marina The Ark Charity Gala in happier times back in June 2009
Boris Johnson’s ex wife Marina Wheeler has described the dying days of their marriage as ‘impossible’ – revealing for the first time that it was her that ended the union.
The 56-year-old author and lawyer said the breakdown of their relationship happened as she was battling cervical cancer.
Ms Wheeler said ‘The divine plan, it seemed, had gone awry’ as she spoke of the 25-year marriage for the first time.
And she disclosed the process of separating from her husband had been ‘grim’.
Ms Wheeler told Good Housekeeping: ‘The divine plan, it seemed, had gone awry. My four children and I already had tough stuff to handle.
‘My 25-year marriage had become impossible, so I ended it, but the whole business was grim, so why was I being doled out more?
‘Of course, that’s not how cancer worked. Two years on, I can see I was lucky.’
Mr Johnson vowed to make Britain the ‘Qatar of hydrogen’ as he wooed businesses chiefs including Mr Gates at a glitzy summit – urging them to invest ‘trillions’ in tackling climate change.
The PM gave a speech and chatted to the Microsoft billionaire on stage as he asked industry leaders to commit funding to decarbonising the world economy – insisting ‘green is good, green is right’.
He said the UK had a responsibility to act on cutting emissions as ‘we were the first to knit the deadly tea cosy of CO2’ – pointing to the ‘big bets’ the government is making on electric vehicles and gigafactories for battery production.
Mr Johnson also played down concerns that the looming COP26 summit in Glasgow will be a failure, saying he is hoping for a ‘good turnout’ of world leaders despite expected snubs from China and Russia.
He said there were $24trillion represented in the room at the Science Museum conference London.
‘I can deploy billions – with the approval of the Chancellor, obviously – but you in this room, you can deploy trillions,’ he said. ‘I want to say to each and every one of those dollars, you are very welcome to the UK and you have come to the right place at the right time.’
He said hydrogen would be a significant part of the solution to replacing fossil fuels. ‘To drive a digger or a truck or to hurl a massive passenger plane down a runway, you need what Jeremy Clarkson used to call ”grunt” – I think there may be a technical term for it – but ”grunt”.
‘Hydrogen provides that grunt, so we are making big bets on hydrogen, we are making bets on solar and hydro, and, yes – of course – on nuclear as well, for our baseload.’
Mr Johnson channelled the spirit of Michael Douglas’s character from the film Wall Street as he told business chiefs: ‘To adapt Gordon Gekko – who may or may not be a hero of anybody in this room – green is good, green is right, green works.’
The UK Government has already committed £200million for the development and demonstration of projects for green hydrogen, long-term energy storage, sustainable aviation fuels and direct air capture of CO2 as part of a £1 billion portfolio of investments.
Mr Johnson and Mr Gates announced that the Breakthrough Energy Catalyst will match that £200million funding over 10 years to help develop the cutting-edge technologies.
The PM said: ‘It will help to bring innovative technologies to market globally, while building new skills and creating high-quality jobs across the UK.’
Mr Gates said the partnership would ‘accelerate the deployment of these critical climate solutions, helping to make them more affordable and accessible’.
Downing Street dismissed questions about whether it was appropriate for the PM’s to share a stage with Mr Gates after he was criticised for his acquaintance with Jeffrey Epstein.
‘Our focus is on working with those individuals who are committed to working on this issue,’ the PM’s spokesman said.
However, despite the enthusiastic words, Mr Johnson seems to have ditched the idea of a total ban on gas boilers from 2035 in the face of anger from Tory MPs and homeowners. Instead there will be a ‘target’ for all new installations to be environmentally-friendly options such as heat pumps.
Families will be encouraged to install low-carbon systems from April with £5,000 grants, costing taxpayers in England and Wales at least £450million.
But the funding will cover just 90,000 heat pump installations over three years – far short of the PM’s goal of 600,000 a year by 2028.
They are the billionaire philanthropist and the ambitious politician who have joined forces in an attempt to lead a green revolution and save the planet from climate disaster
Mr Johnson is joined by his wife Carrie on stage after delivering his keynote speech at the Conservative Party Conference
Boris Johnson and wife Marina Wheeler at launch of his 2014 book The Churchill Factor
The Prime Minister was married to first wife Allegra Mostyn-Owen for six years and Marina Wheeler for 27 years
Mr Johnson has launched the Heat and Buildings Strategy, mapping out how the UK will move away from polluting energy sources in homes and public buildings.
It comes amid signs of rising tension between Mr Johnson and Chancellor Rishi Sunak as the Treasury warned of ‘diminishing returns’ from green investment – at a time when the UK’s post-Covid economic recovery has slowed amid rising inflation and widespread shortages.
Prince Charles has increased the pressure on minister to act on climate change by describing how his grandson Prince George has been learning how global warming is causing ‘the big storms, and floods, the droughts, fires and food shortages’ around the world.
In an interview with Bloomberg, Mr Johnson said: ‘The UK is deciding to make a big bet on green technology so the government is going in, setting the regulatory framework to encourage the private sector to come in, in the way that they are – and I’ve quoted some of the numbers for the investment that we are seeing.
‘So we are making a big bet on wind power, on hydrogen, on electric vehicles, on gigafactories, on carbon capture and storage, all those things. And that’s driving a lot of the investment.’
REVEALED: Married Bill Gates was told by Microsoft’s top lawyer to stop sending flirty and ‘inappropriate’ emails to a mid-level female employee when he was CEO a decade ago
Ex-Microsoft boss Bill Gates (seen right with then-wife Melinda Gates in 2010) was told by two top executives at the firm to stop sending flirtatious emails to a female employee he had propositioned while he was CEO and married to Melinda Gates more than a decade ago, it has been reported
Bill Gates was reportedly told by two top executives at the firm to stop sending flirtatious emails to a female employee he had propositioned while he was CEO and married to Melinda Gates more than a decade ago.
The revelation comes just months after Gates’ wife filed for divorce, claiming that the marriage was ‘irretrievably broken.’ The divorce was finalized in August.
The 2008 emails from Gates were sent to a midlevel employee at the software giant. They were later discovered by Microsoft executives.
Gates was summoned to a meeting by the company’s top lawyer at the time, Brad Smith, and Lisa Brummel, the firm’s most senior human resources executive.
During the meeting, Smith and Brummel told Gates that the emails were inappropriate and that he needed to stop, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Gates reportedly agreed to stop corresponding with the woman.
According to the Journal, Smith and Brummel informed the company board of the emails. The board met and determined that no further action was necessary since there wasn’t any physical altercation, according to the report.
A spokesperson for Microsoft told the Journal that the company was made aware of Gates’ emails to the mid-level female employee in 2007 – just months before Gates was set to retire as a full-time employee.
The spokesperson, Frank Shaw, told the Journal that Gates offered to meet the woman outside of work and off campus.
‘While flirtatious, they were not overtly sexual, but were deemed to be inappropriate,’ he said.
Shaw said that the employee never filed a complaint against Gates about the incident.
Bridgitt Arnold, a spokesperson for Bill Gates, told the Journal: ‘These claims are false, recycled rumors from sources who have no direct knowledge, and in some cases have significant conflicts of interest.’
Around the time that Gates’ wife petitioned for divorce earlier this year, news stories began to emerge about the Microsoft co-founder’s penchant for pursuing romantic relationships with female underlings.
There were also several reports about Melinda’s unhappiness over Bill’s friendship with convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein.