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Amazon boss Jeff Bezos is the richest person in the world and has, according to Bloomberg Billionaire Index, a net wealth of 125 billion US dollars. And he is investing much of his Amazon assets in the development of space technologies through his carrier Blue Origin.

Why? "Because I think it's important," says Bezos Norah O & #; Donnell in an interview broadcast on Tuesday by "CBS Evening News." "I think it's important for this planet. I think it's important for the momentum of future generations. It is something that is very close to my heart. And that's something I've been thinking about all my life. "

Bezos – who says:" You do not choose your passions, your passions choose you "- was fascinated by outer space when he was a child astronauts like Buzz Aldrin and dr. Neil Armstrong lands on the moon, he tells O & Donnell.

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The development of space technologies is critical to a long-term future for humans Bezos says.

"We humans need to go into space if we want to continue to have a thriving civilization," says Bezos. "We grew up as a population, as a species and this planet is relatively small. We see it in things like climate change and pollution and heavy industry. We are about to destroy this planet. And we sent robot probes to every planet in the solar system – that's the good thing. So we have to keep this planet.

To achieve this, you have to be able to live and work in space, says Bezos.

"We send things into space, but they are all made on Earth. Ultimately, it will be much cheaper and easier to make really complicated things like microprocessors and everything in space and then send these highly complex fabricated objects back to Earth so we do not have the big factories and industries that are causing the pollution now Earth, "says Bezos. "And the earth can be divided into residential areas."

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It's going to be a multiple "Generations" and "hundreds of years" before this becomes reality, Bezos said about CBS, but with Blue Origin, he works to develop the technology that makes this possible.

Humans will be able to live in outer space-sufficient space structures-if they so wish, says Bezos.

"People will want to live on earth and they will want to live on earth. There will also be very beautiful places where you can not live on earth. People will make that choice, "says Bezos.

Astronaut John Glenn, the first American to circled the earth, wrote a letter to Bezos in 2016, saying that Bezo's work would eventually make space as popular as aviation.

] "He wrote me the most beautiful letter just a few days before he died, and I framed it in my office, and it has a great meaning to me," says Bezos. Glenn said in this letter, he sees a future in which we will board spaceships such as Jetliner, and "if that happens, it will be mainly due to your epic successes."

"I think that's absolutely believable," says Bezos. "If you had gone back a hundred years and told people today that you could buy a ticket and fly around the world in a jetliner, they would have thought you were crazy. But that's the kind of change that can happen in just 100 years or less.

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The first step in this journey is space tourism. Bezos says. Blue Origin is already testing its vehicle, the New Shepherd, to launch people for short tourism trips.

"Anyone who goes into space says he comes back a little bit changed and realizes how beautiful this planet is and how small and small it is fragile," says Bezos. "Something we can not see when we're down here, but from up there it becomes obvious."

© CNBC is a USA TODAY content partner that provides financial news and commentary. Its content is being produced TODAY independently of the US.

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