Pittsfield – Quick stop at a dispensary? Catching a show at Tanglewood?
They were questions posted by followers of a Twitter account, “Russian Oligarch Jets,” followed by tracked a jet Owned by one of the richest men in the world for Morning Landing in Pittsfield.
As well as tweets that were less kind.
According to an automated tracker posted on Twitter, a Boeing 737-700 owned by billionaire Len Blavatnik landed at Pittsfield Municipal Airport on July 13 at 8:48 a.m. It took off on the same day, Wednesday, just a few hours later.
Pittsfield airport itself posted a video of the landing, without recognizing that the jet is owned by Blavatnik, whom Forbes currently lists as the 42nd richest person in the world.
A post from the airport’s Twitter account #FlyPSF that day read, “Did you see an unusually large plane flying over the city of #Pittsfield this morning.” The tweet identified the operator of the jet as Polaris Aviation.
Born in the Soviet Union in the 1950s, Blavatnik moved to the United States at the age of about 21 after earning a bachelor’s degree at Moscow State University in 1978. He became a US citizen in 1984 and holds dual British citizenship. In the US, he earned a master’s degree in computer science from Columbia University and then an MBA from Harvard University.
Although Blavatnik severed his early ties with Russia, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is not the target of current government sanctions against oligarchs, he prospered through his association with a man who was sanctioned. has been done. Forbes magazine reports that Blavatnik’s early wealth stemmed from his relationship with Viktor Vekselberg and investments in Russian oil and aluminum companies.
Even before the start of the war against Ukraine this year, a spokesman for Blavatnik told Forbes that he is not Russian and has never considered himself a Russian. “And there is not an oligarchy,” the spokesperson told the magazine.
His net worth is estimated to be around $30 billion today. Over the years he has given hundreds of millions of rupees to charities and schools, including Harvard and Oxford universities. He was knighted in 2017 by Queen Elizabeth II in recognition of his philanthropy. He is a major contributor to both major American political parties.
Although aviation trips are recorded and public, it is not known who was on board the 737 that landed in Pittsfield, or why it came to the city for a few hours.
The 16-passenger jet, built in 1999 and once owned by the General Electric Company, left Pittsfield just before noon, according to the Russian Oligarch Jets Twitter feed, returning to the New York City area — first White Plains and then New York City. York Stewart International Airport, Newburgh, NY. In
Blavatnik has a home in Greenwich, Conn., close to White Plains Airport, as well as an East Side townhouse and Park Avenue apartment in New York City. However, his most valuable residence is believed to be his Kensington Palace Garden mansion in London which is worth an estimated $250 million.
Newberg Airport is listed as the jet’s home base, where it is managed by Polaris Aviation Solutions LLC. Flight Tracker shows repeated trips in and out of that airspace.
The timing of the visit to Pittsfield did not coincide with performances at Berkshire venues in that time frame – too early for matinees of “Once” at the Berkshire Theater Group and “Man of God” at the Williamstown Theater Festival.
The Russian Oligarch Jets Twitter Tracker calculates fuel used, fuel cost and CO2 output. The jet’s morning flight on July 13 from White Plains to Pittsfield, covering 96 miles, consumed an estimated 406 gallons of fuel at a cost of $2,799. That leg of the journey alone produced four tons of CO2 emissions, according to the tracker.
In the past two months, the Blavatnik jet has crossed the Atlantic Ocean, carrying passengers to France and Italy. The July 8 flight from Bordeaux, France to JFK International Airport, consumed $45,435 worth of fuel and produced an estimated 69 tons of CO2 emissions.
Based on 22 miles per gallon and 11,500 miles traveled, the average passenger vehicle in the US emits 4.6 metric tons of CO2 in an entire year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Since visiting Pittsfield, the Blavatnik jet has traveled to Portland, Maine, an airport in the Hampton on Long Island, and Nice, France, among other locations.
According to the Super Yacht/Fan website, this jet is one of several Blavatnik owners own. He also has a yacht named Odessa II, named after his hometown in Ukraine.
A Forbes profile states that Blavatnik took in $7 billion in 2013 for selling a stake in a Russian oil company. His net worth rose again after Warner Music Group took it public, and quadrupled its value, after acquiring it in 2011 for $3.3 billion.
As of Sunday, Forbes’ “Real Time” tracker listed Blavatnik’s net worth at $29.8 billion. This is $2.7 billion less than the figure earlier this year.
The investment company he runs, Access Industries, has an ownership interest in LyondellBasell, a chemical company; Rocket Internet, which does e-commerce; and other businesses, including a fashion company Tory Burch.