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Nearly 1,000 Amazon employees plan walkout over climate change

Amazon employees continue their push against the company's climate change stance. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Almost 1,000 Amazon employees are planning a walkout on Friday, September 20, in an effort to compel the company to “demonstrate real climate leadership.”

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“As employees at one of the largest and most powerful companies in the world, our role in facing the climate crisis is to ensure our company is leading on climate, not following,” said the Amazon Employees for Climate Justice group on Medium. “We have to take responsibility for the impact that our business has on the planet and on people.”

The walkout will be in solidarity with a global strike for workers and students, that will be held between Sept. 20-27.

The group of employees noted in its statement that the company “contributes directly” to climate change through its “fossil fuel infrastructures,” while funding “the premier climate denying think tank.”

As part of the late-September walkout, the group is demanding:

  • Zero emissions companywide by 2030
  • Zero contracts through Amazon Web Services with fossil fuel companies
  • Zero funding for lobbyists and politicians that deny climate change

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In December 2018, the group formed a shareholder resolution urging action against climate change, and met with company officials shortly after that. At the time, it alleged that leaders within Amazon would likely oppose the resolution.

In April, it released a public letter urging the company’s leadership to adopt a plan on climate change.

Amazon has made some strides on that front in recent months, enacting its “Shipment Zero” plan, to make 50 percent of all shipments carbon neutral by 2030. It has also recently invested in wind farms in Ireland, Sweden, and Southern California. The wind power is slated to provide power for Amazon Web Services’ data centers. The centers used 50 percent clean energy in 2018, according to GeekWire.

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