Global e-commerce giant Amazon has announced The Climate Pledge, a commitment to meet the Paris Agreement 10 years early. The Climate Pledge calls on signatories to be net zero carbon across their businesses by 2040.
Companies that sign The Climate Pledge agree to measure and report greenhouse gas emissions on a regular basis. They also agree to implement decarbonization strategies in line with the Paris Agreement through real business changes and innovations, including efficiency improvements, renewable energy, materials reductions, and other carbon emission elimination strategies. The companies also agree to neutralize any remaining emissions with additional, quantifiable, real, permanent, and socially-beneficial offsets to achieve net zero annual carbon emissions by 2040.
By joining The Climate Pledge and agreeing to decarbonize on a faster time horizon, signatories will play a critical role in stimulating investment in the development of low carbon products and services that will be required to help companies meet the pledge.
Amazon says that its previously announced investment in Rivian is an example of this. Rivian is a producer of emissions-free electric vehicles with its headquarters in Plymouth, Michigan and a manufacturing plant in Normal, Illinois. Amazon today announced the order of 100,000 electric delivery vehicles from Rivian, with vans starting to deliver packages to customers in 2021. Amazon plans to have 10,000 of the new electric vehicles on the road as early as 2022 and all 100,000 vehicles on the road by 2030. This, it claims, will save 4 million metric tons of carbon per year by 2030.
“If a company with as much physical infrastructure as Amazon—which delivers more than 10 billion items a year—can meet the Paris Agreement 10 years early, then any company can. I’ve been talking with other CEOs of global companies, and I’m finding a lot of interest in joining the pledge. Large companies signing The Climate Pledge will send an important signal to the market that it’s time to invest in the products and services the signatories will need to meet their commitments,” Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO said.
Amazon is pledging to reach 80% renewable energy by 2024 and 100% renewable energy by 2030 on its path to net zero carbon by 2040. Major investments in renewable energy are a critical step to address its carbon footprint globally.
Amazon is also launching the Right Now Climate Fund, committing $100 million to restore and protect forests, wetlands, and peatlands around the world in partnership with The Nature Conservancy. The Right Now Climate Fund will help remove millions of metric tons of carbon from the atmosphere over the lifetime of the project, and create economic opportunity for thousands of people.
Amazon also launched a new sustainability website to report on its commitments, initiatives, and performance. The site includes information on Amazon’s carbon footprint and other sustainability metrics that share the progress the company is making towards reaching The Climate Pledge.
The new goals, commitments, investments, and programs announced today build on Amazon’s long-term commitment to sustainability through existing innovative programs, including Shipment Zero – Amazon’s vision to make all shipments net zero carbon, with 50% net zero carbon by 2030; sustainable packaging initiatives like Frustration-Free Packaging and Ship in Own Container, which have reduced packaging waste by 25% since 2015; renewable energy programs; investments in the circular economy with the Closed Loop Fund; and numerous other initiatives happening every day by teams across Amazon.