Amazon Launches Green Initiative in India & Study Finds Cost of U.N. Decarbonization Plan

by | Jan 20, 2020 | Articles, Featured

Amazon Unveils Electric Rickshaw Fleet in India 

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced the company’s new fleet of electric rickshaws in a video posted to social media on Jan. 20. The video shows Bezos driving one of the rickshaws and ends with the vehicles creating the Amazon logo.

Bezos shared the video along with the hashtag #ClimatePledge, referring to Amazon’s pledge to meet the standards of the Paris Climate Agreement 10 years early. To achieve this, Amazon commits to using 100% renewable energy by 2030 and being carbon neutral by 2040.

“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,” Bezos said.

Using electric fleets for delivery is one of the ways that Amazon aims to achieve this goal. Amazon plans to have 100,000 electric vehicles delivering packages by 2030, with 10,000 electric rickshaws on the roads of India by 2025. Using that many electric vehicles will save 4 million metric tons of carbon per year, according to an article from Business Wire.

Environmental pledges were not the only focus of Bezos’ trip, though. Bezos also announced a $1 billion investment in digitizing the country’s small and medium businesses. The company hopes this will give them a competitive advantage in the saturated race to India’s e-commerce market.

U.N. Goals for Decarbonization in Maritime Shipping to Cost $1 Trillion 

To achieve the goals of the U.N.’s shipping decarbonization plan, a minimum of $1 trillion in capital investment will be required, according to a study published on Jan. 20. The current U.N. plan calls for a 50% cut in CO2 emissions by 2050.

The $1 trillion price tag is the cost on the conservative end, as the study said the plan could cost up to $1.4 trillion, or an average of $50 to $70 billion annually, according to Reuters. If the shipping industry wanted to fully decarbonize, that would add another $400 billion.

Global shipping accounts for 2.2% of the world’s C02 emissions and is a significant contributor to air pollution, water pollution and oil pollution. The plans for cutting down emissions vary in cost and execution, but the largest share of work will have to be done to create better land-based infrastructure.

Only 13% of the total cost would be spent on the ships themselves. The ship-related expenses would be mostly machinery and onboard storage, along with investments in improving the energy efficiency of the machines.

It is unclear yet whether the shipping industry will be willing to invest over $1 trillion in decarbonization.

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