Why is Amazon so touchy about its employees speaking out on climate change? The answer’s right across Lake Washington

“I have a hunch why Amazon is getting so touchy about its employees speaking out about the company’s climate-change policies. In some cases it has even threatened to fire them.

“This isn’t because of some “corporate communications” policy, which has been the official reason given. It’s also hard to imagine that even the strongest critiques about carbon accounting could be so embarrassing as to damage the business.

“But if you read what Amazonians posted in their open letter this week, a certain sore point does keep coming up:

“Microsoft plans to be carbon negative (by 2030) sooner than we want to be carbon neutral (by 2040). How can Amazon claim to be ‘thinking big’?” wrote Duncan Scott, an Amazon software engineer.

“Hell, if Microsoft can do it (go carbon negative), why can’t we?” echoed Austin Dworaczyk Wiltshire, another Amazon engineer.

“The real pioneer moment went to Microsoft,” lamented Annett Stapf, an Amazon program manager. “I hope Bill Gates scratched Jeff´s competition-nerve…”

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