Amazon’s overall influence is far-reaching. And it’s impact on businesses? Well, Netflix, Lyft, and Pinterest are heavily reliant on it, just to name a few. But with this influence comes a responsibility to shareholders, customers, and employees, but also to the environment. Today, Amazon announced three new projects that aim to power 100% of AWS global infrastructure with renewable energy sources.
According to an Amazon press release, Amazon hopes to implement wind-generated energy solutions in Ireland, Sweden, and the United States.
Goals of The Initiative
It’s expectation? To generate over 670,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of renewable energy annually.
Admittedly, these sound like ambitious goals, even for a company like Amazon. Being able to power all of AWS infrastructure with renewable energy sources doesn’t sound easy. But Amazon has already reached the 50% mark as of 2018, according to its sustainability website, which is highly reassuring.
According to AP, combining the work of these three new projects with Amazon’s previous work in sustainability would yield “more than 2,700,000 MWh of renewable energy annually – equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of over 262,000 US homes”.
Scope of The Initiative
In Ireland and Sweden, Amazon aims to purchase power from wind farms. In the United States, Amazon hopes to power AWS through hydroelectric sources. But even beyond the scope of AWS, Amazon appears to be working hard to make all of its operations sustainable and environmentally-friendly.
Take, for instance, its Shipment Zero initiative, one that promises to make its shipments net zero carbon, hoping to reach the 50% mark by 2030. Additionally, Amazon takes pride in its existing wind farm project in Texas, which looks to add some 1 million MWh of clean energy each year. It’s solar farms in Virginia and Wind Farms in North Carolina, Ohio, and Indiana also further affirm Amazon’s dedication to renewables.
Amazon isn’t nearly as well-known for its sustainability efforts compared to companies like Tesla and Audi, who put their initiatives front and center. But as far as impact is concerned, Amazon’s initiatives are promising.
Steven is an Editor for the Politics section at The Rising and a Computer Science student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.