Seattle youth activists 'school' Amazon on its climate, cargo pollution

Wednesday November 10, 2021

Climate Action Families Seattle holds teach-in at Amazon HQ, deliver disappointing report card to company executives

SEATTLE — Nearly two dozen youth activists ranging from ages 8-15 with Climate Action Families Seattle held a teach-in on Thursday, November 11, outside Amazon’s Day 1 headquarters building in downtown Seattle, delivering a disappointing report card, and schooling executives on the company’s climate and cargo shipping pollution.

“The world, the place we call home. is at serious risk here. failure isn't an option. In 19 years I will be 31, I shouldn’t have to wait to have clean air and healthy seas. But our world can't wait.  Amazon can make a huge impact on our climate change crisis by committing to 100% zero emission ships by 2030. It would give all of our generation and the generations to come a brighter future,” said Ruby V-D, age 12, of Bellingham.

The report card, which measures 2 feet by 3 feet, gave Amazon an “incomplete” grade on its cargo shipping climate commitment, saying the company put in a “good effort, but needs improvement” and “19 years – 6,935 more days of port pollution is unacceptable.” The youth activists also drew messages on the sidewalk in chalk, including “9 years vs 19 years: How long for zero-emissions ships?” and “Amazon: Ditch dirty ships!”

“Amazon is making very bad decisions,” said Sahale, 8, of Bellingham. “Even though they have committed to 10 percent zero emission ships by 2030, we need 100 percent by then. The world will be a very different place if they don’t stand up and help.” 

“Climate scientists tell us that we have less than 10 years to solve the climate crisis,” said Erik, 12, of Seattle. “19 years is just too long to wait for Amazon to switch to 100% zero emission shipping.”

The messages echoed concerns raised by the Ship It Zero coalition about Amazon’s recent commitment to transition to zero-emissions cargo shipping vessels by 2040, calling that commitment “historic but too weak” and demanding that the company take more immediate action to address its climate and health-harming maritime pollution by switching to zero-emissions ships by 2030 — a decade earlier than Amazon’s stated commitment. 

ABOUT CLIMATE ACTION FAMILIES SEATTLE

Climate Action Families is a nonprofit organization founded in Seattle in 2013. Youth activists and their families take decisive action on climate change and global equity through educating themselves and others, building community, making necessary lifestyle changes, and becoming advocates for science and civil rights in our institutions of governance. Learn more at climateactionfamilies.org.

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Media contacts: 

Virginia Cleaveland, U.S. Media Director, media@stand.earth, +1 510 858 9902 (Pacific Time)

To schedule an interview with youth leaders or for more information, contact Climate Action Families Seattle Secretary Rusty West at 206-909-3664 or rusty@climateactionfamilies.org.