‘We actually consume your products’

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announces the co-founding of The Climate Pledge at the National Press Club on September 19, 2019 in Washington.

Paul Morigi | Getty Images | Amazon

As Google’s cloud unit pulls out of the oil and gas industry, an Amazon Web Services sales representative woos customers by highlighting the number of fossil fuel products the company uses today to power business, while highlighting Amazon’s commitment to switching to renewable energy.

Earlier this week, environmental group Greenpeace published a report on the work of cloud providers with oil companies. Google responded by telling the media, including CNBC, that it would not create custom artificial intelligence algorithms for the oil and gas industry.

Brad Farmer, a Houston-based Amazon employee in the AWS oil and gas team for central America, saw an opportunity. He published a LinkedIn Publish in which he pointed out that Amazon is a customer of the oil companies’ products.

“If you are an O&G company looking for a strategic digital transformation partner, we recommend that you choose a partner who really uses your products and can help you transform yourself for the future – instead of planes / trucks / Microsoft and Google vans non-existent purchase your products. $ 0 front-line, “wrote Farmer.

“Amazon buys jet fuel for our Amazon Prime Air planes! Amazon Middle Mile buys diesel for our 18-wheeler trucks! Amazon Last Mile buys gas for our blue Mercedes Sprinter vans you see in your neighborhoods!” He opposed this to Google, saying that he is “embarrassed to be seen in public with O&G companies”.

The farmer also recognized Amazon’s goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2040: “We also have a STRONG commitment to renewable energy sources as Amazon moves to net carbon emissions from here 2040, so we are actively engaged in discussions on renewable fuel supply “

Amazon did not immediately comment on Farmer’s post.

Fossil fuels and their contribution to climate change is a thorny subject for the company.

A group of Amazon employees have asked Amazon to end cloud contracts with companies that extract oil and gas. But Amazon has refused to end the contracts, claiming the work is helping energy companies “reduce their demand for carbon sources” and his website shows oil and gas customers like BP and Hess.

If Amazon were to return to oil and gas, it would offer an opening to its main competitor in the field, Microsoft Azure. Google, meanwhile, has had little success in the oil and gas sector – a company spokesperson told CNBC that the sector accounted for less than 1% of its cloud revenue in 2019, and that sales to the sector had decreased compared to the previous year. .

AWS controlled 47.8% of the cloud infrastructure market in 2018, while Microsoft held 15.5% and Google 4%, according to Gartner.

A group of employees called Amazon Employees for Climate Justice is widely recognized for influencing Bezos’ decision to announce a radical plan on climate change last September. As part of this plan, Amazon has committed to achieving the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement by 2040, a decade before the goal of the Paris Agreement. The company also predicts that 80% of Amazon’s energy consumption will come from renewable sources by 2024, up from a current rate of 40%, before going to zero emissions by 2030.

Emily Cunningham, a former Amazon user experience designer and AECJ member, called Amazon’s work with oil and gas companies missing. In April, Amazon fired Cunningham and Maren Costa, also a user experience designer, for breaking the rules of the business.

“Amazon cannot say that it is leading the climate in one breath and then in another, partnering with fossil fuel companies to accelerate and develop oil extraction,” said Cunningham. “The fossil fuel industry is a disappearing industry. Even oil and gas companies know this. A partnership with Big Oil is not only morally repugnant, it’s a bad deal.”

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