As questions of oil efficacy and the drawbacks of coal rise into the public forum and become international issues, corporations like Amazon are making moves to insure that their legacy is one of sustainability.
These efforts will begin with wide-spread solar power installations placed on the rooftops of global sorting facilities – these factories, which often draw a great deal of power due to the robotic sorters used inside, are projected to draw as much as 80% of their electricity from these solar panels. One California facility is expected to be coated with solar panels on 3/4ths of the total 1.1 million square foot roof by the end of this year.
Amazon, one of the leading names in electronic commerce and the overall most valuable retailer in the United States, announced these plans on the heels of criticisms by international environmental organization Greenpeace. A January report by Greenpeace accused Amazon of lagging behind market competitors such as Apple and Google when it came to meeting their environmental promises.
Although Amazon plans to place 15 installations by the end of 2017, their long-term plan is to install 50 solar arrays by 2020. Amazon has also installed wind and solar energy sources across the United States in the past, most of which are used to power data centers and company servers.
Although this project is sure to produce a great deal of power and bring Amazon closer to meeting their environmental goals, wide-scale efforts are likely necessary to reverse the public perception of the company as less considerate than their competitors.