Google Employees Sign Open Letter Demanding Company Take Decisive Climate Action
In the fight against the climate crisis, it may seem like disaster is imminent and there’s nothing we can do about it. But people around the world are stepping up to join the battle, and that’s what Google employees want their place of work to do as well.
In an open letter to Chief Financial Officer Ruth Porat, over 1,100 employees have thus far called upon Google to take decisive climate action.
“We, the undersigned Google workers, in accordance with the gravity and urgency of the global climate crisis and its disproportionate harm to marginalized people, call on Google to commit to and release a company-wide climate plan,” the letter says.
The employees went on to make a list of reasonable policies they want to see Google adopt, including:
1.Zero emissions by 2030.
2. Zero contracts to enable or accelerate the extraction of fossil fuels.
3. Zero funding for climate-denying or -delaying think tanks, lobbyists, and politicians.
4. Zero collaboration with entities enabling the incarceration, surveillance, displacement, or oppression of refugees or frontline communities.
To make their point even clearer, the Google employees pointed out that Amazon and Microsoft employees have also called upon their respective companies to adopt the same policies in the fight against climate change and went even further by quoting a similar open letter by Amazon employees, which highlighted the disasters caused by climate change and warning that if global temperatures cross a certain threshold that all life on our planet, including humans, will be at serious risk of extinction.
This past summer was the hottest on record as temperatures around the globe shot up, resulting in stronger hurricanes, worse droughts and more destructive wildfires. And this vicious cycle is going to repeat every year if the world does not do something about it. To that end, corporations like Google have the money and the clout to lead the way, something employees reminded their bosses.
“Google is a global company with billions of users across the world, many of whom are already bearing the brunt of climate disaster,” they concluded. “Google’s code of conduct requires respect for users and for opportunities. As Google workers, we are committed to putting our users first, and Google must do the same.”
More Google employees add their own names to this open letter every day, and it won’t be long before management will have to address it. But rather than simply address it, Google has an opportunity to do something that other companies have so far failed to do. And that is to listen to their employees and actually take action consistent with the policies suggested.
Google doesn’t make a profit if most of the population is not around to actually use Google. Furthermore, Google relies on infrastructure around the world that could be damaged or destroyed by climate-related natural disasters.
However, it should also be pointed out that Google is already doing something to address climate change by investing $2 billion in solar and wind projects in response to the climate strike. But they could do so much more, and their employees clearly believe the company is in the perfect position to lead the way.
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