Reading Time: 2 minutes One of the new certifications guarantees high animal welfare - but the animal agriculture industry is driving climate change. Credit: Adobe. Do not use without permission.
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Global retail giant Amazon has added new certifications to its sustainability program in line with goals to become net-zero by 2040.

This means over the next two decades, the brand hopes to reach zero carbon emissions.

Amazon sustainability program

The Climate Pledge Friendly program highlights products that meet ‘sustainability standards’, such as those that are Fairtrade.

This is in partnership with ‘trusted’ third-party certifications including Bluesign, CarbonNeutral, and the Forest Stewardship Council.

Whilst it was launched last year, four new labels join the cohort of 31 as the scheme expands.

Each certification organization claims to be committed to environmental issues, from reducing carbon footprints to utilizing climate-friendly packaging. New additions include Regenerative Organic Certified, which claims to offer an end to factory farming, as well as EWG Verified and The US Environmental Protection Agency.

‘We are committed to building a sustainable business for our customers and the planet’, the company revealed.

Animal agriculture

However, the Certified Animal Welfare Approved label is among them.

Whilst the organization says it guarantees animals are raised outdoors and its farms use ‘high-welfare’ farming practices – animal agriculture as an industry is driving climate change. And this is according to a host of studies and experts.

For example, meat and dairy production has been found to cause a staggering 87 percent of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) – at least.

As net-zero emissions mean all man-made GHGs must be removed from the atmosphere, many thinkers argue the immediate end to animal agriculture is required to meet global targets.

Amazon scandal

Whilst the online shopping site can be seen to be improving its environmental outlook, it was embroiled in a scandal over the pandemic for its treatment of staff.

Many workers reported horrific conditions from cramped COVID-19 conditions to low pay. Additionally, the company allegedly fired two employees for advocating for better labor and environmental conditions.

Its founder is billionaire Jeff Bezos. Under his Bezos Earth Fund, he’s injected millions to environmental justice firms. However, he’s been criticized for being a major contributor to climate change. And this is largely due to the fast international shipping policies offered by Amazon.

One environmentalist told Wired: “If it were a country, the shipping industry would be the sixth-largest greenhouse gas emitter.

That’s on par with a G7 country. If left unchecked, the shipping industry will represent 18 percent of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. We can’t afford to ignore this source of emissions internationally or here at home in the US.”

Emily is a News and Features Writer for Plant Based News. She has previously worked as a journalist in Devon, UK, reporting on local issues from politics to the environment.