The Earths Most Customer Centric Company Needs to hear from you

by Gary Cook

September 22, 2014

With a mission to be “Earth’s most customer-centric company“, Amazon.comhas been at the center of the growth of our online economy.Amazon cloud computing branch, AmazonWeb Services (AWS), also hosts some of the biggest and fastest growing piece of the internet, including Netflix, Pinterest, and Tumblr. In fact, every day one third of all internet users visit an Amazon Web Services hosted site.

But unlike competitors, Amazon has made no effort to power its rapidly growing infrastructure with renewable energy. Amazon also remains the only major Internet company that hasnt released ANY data on its energy use or environmental impact.

Amazons approach stands in stark contrast to the rapid change we have seen from competitors like Apple in the past two years, highlighting that companies can move very quickly when their leaders are motivated — and even faster when they are hearing from their customers. Just one day after 400,000 people marched in New York City for action on climate change, Apples CEO Tim Cook took the stage this week in New York to reaffirm Apples is commitment to addressing climate change, and stated that those companies who are transparent on their environmental footprint will be rewarded by consumers, who all want companies to do the right thing.

We agree, and thats why this week, Greenpeace Internationals Executive Director Kumi Naidoo (who marched proudly in the Peoples Climate March on Sunday) sent an open letter to Jeff Bezos, asking that he embrace the challenge as Tim Cook has done, and commit Amazon to making public its environmental footprint and join the race to build a green, renewably powered internet.

Now, Greenpeace is asking customers to join the call for Amazons action on this important issue.

Tell Amazons Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos to come clean about his companys energy performance and environmental impact.

When Greenpeace first launched the ClickClean challenge for major internet brands to become renewably powered back in 2010, most tech companies did not want to provide even basic details on their electricity demand, much less the sources of energy being used. Companies claimed that this was confidential information, and could never report it.

But things have changed dramatically in the past two years because customers began demanding better answers from Facebook, Apple, Google, and other major internet companies. People want to know that their photos, music, and other information they have in the cloud is powered by renewable energy, not increasing demand for coal and other sources of dirty energy driving climate change.

Despite this shift one of the largest and most powerful corners of the internet remains out of the race: Amazon and AWS sites may be integral to our daily lives, but they come at a high cost when they’re powered by out-dated and polluting energy power like coal, gas and nuclear.

Its time Amazon became a leader for our climate. The first step would be for Jeff Bezos to end the secrecy around his companys environmental impact.

Take action today and tell Amazons CEO Jeff Bezos to be transparent about Amazons environmental footprint, and move toward renewable energy.

Gary Cook

By Gary Cook

Gary Cook is a Senior Corporate Campaigner on the Climate & Energy Campaign. He leads Greenpeace’s successful campaign to challenge global IT companies to commit to becoming 100% renewably powered, and authors Greenpeace’s annual Guide to Green Electronics and Clicking Clean sector scorecards.

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