Amazon’s Black Friday Greeted by Climate Activists, Strikes in Europe


Climate activists targeted 15 Amazon depots across Europe on “Black Friday” and the world’s largest e-commerce company also faced protests from workers and delivery drivers in Germany, France and Italy. Seattle-based Amazon is facing criticism from climate activists who say excessive consumption harms the environment, while a coalition of trade unions says the company does not pay workers enough nor pays governments enough. does enough.

,black Friday epitomizes an obsession with overconsumption that does not correspond to a habitable planet,” the Extinction Rebellion group said after blocking 13 heroine Depots across the United Kingdom.

“Amazon and companies like it capitalize on our desire for convenience and promote consumerism on a large scale at the expense of the natural world,” it said.

Reuters reporters at an Amazon depot at Tilbury Dock in eastern England said protesters had blocked the entrance, meaning no vehicles could enter or exit. The group also said it blocked Amazon depots in Germany and the Netherlands.

The banner read: “Black Friday exploits people and the planet” and “Infinite Evolution, Finite Planet”.

Extinction Rebellion said the Amazon’s “crimes” include activities that emit more carbon dioxide than a medium-sized country, helping fossil fuel companies.

“We have a large network of sites across the UK and are working to minimize any potential disruption to customers,” said an Amazon spokesperson, which brought the traditional US Black Friday discount day to the UK in 2010. Was.

Amazon also said it takes its responsibilities “very seriously.”

“This includes our commitment to be net zero carbon by 2040 – 10 years before the Paris Agreement – ​​providing excellent pay and benefits in a safe and modern work environment, and supporting the thousands of British small businesses that sell at our stores.”

“We know there’s always more to do,” it said.

Trade unions in Europe’s biggest economies also called on warehouse workers and delivery drivers to strike against Amazon’s unreasonably low wages and tax payments.

In Germany, the company’s biggest market after the United States, Verdi Union said about 2,500 workers went on strike at Amazon shipping centers in Rheinberg, Koblenz and Graben.

In France, the CGT, one of the country’s top labor unions, called on Amazon employees in the country to go on strike. The Union Coalition also reported a strike in Italy.

“The alliance demands that Amazon pay its employees fairly and respect their right to join unions, pay their fair share of taxes, and for real environmental sustainability,” the “Amazon Pay” Coalition said in a statement. Be committed.”

© Thomson Reuters 2021