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WASHINGTON, D.C. September 19, 2019. Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos has decided leading by example can persuade corporations worldwide to implement climate crisis solutions before it is too late.

Together with former UN climate head Christina Figueres, he has launched The Climate Pledge, a call for companies to be emission net zero by 2040 – 10 years ahead of the Paris Agreement goal.

“We’re done being in the middle of the herd on this issue—we’ve decided to use our size and scale to make a difference,” said Bezos (pictured). “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.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos“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,” he added.

To do this his company has ordered 100,000 electric vehicles from Rivian, with deliveries beginning in 2021. Amazon has already invested US$400 million in the manufacturer that has a plant in Normal, Illinois.

Amazon plans to have 10,000 of the new electric vehicles on the road as early as 2022 and all 100,000 vehicles operating by 2030 – saving four million tonnes of carbon per year by then.

Bezos has also launched a partnership with The Nature Conservancy called the Right Now Climate Fund and his company has committed US$100 million to restore and protect forests, wetlands and peatlands around the world and so remove millions of tonnes of carbon from the atmosphere.

“Bold steps by big companies will make a huge difference in the development of new technologies and industries to support a low carbon economy,” commented Figueres, the founding partner of Global Optimism.

“If Amazon can set ambitious goals like this and make significant changes at their scale, we think many more companies should be able to do the same and will accept the challenge. We are excited to have others join,” she continued.

With the launch of a new sustainability website reporting on its commitments, initiatives and performance, Amazon is pledging to reach 80 percent renewable energy by 2024; 100 percent renewable energy by 2030; 50 percent of shipments net zero carbon by 2030 and company-wide operations net zero carbon by 2040.

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