Amazon orders 100,000 Rivian electric vans, will hit the road in 2021

Jeff Bezos unveils sweeping plan to tackle climate change CNBC

Jeff Bezos just announced an ambitious climate pledge that aims to make Amazon carbon neutral by 2040

Amazon.com Inc Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos on Thursday committed the company to being carbon neutral by 2040 and said part of that pledge is an order for 100,000 electric delivery vans from a start-up the online retailer has invested in. The company aims to have 10,000 copies of the vehicles on the road as early as 2022, and all 100,000 vans will arrive by 2030. Amazon has been under pressure from its own employees who asked the company to play a leading role in dealing with climate change.

The billionaire announced a number of actions at a press conference in Washington ahead of Climate Week in NY next week, a global gathering of world and company leaders seeking ways to fight climate change.

"If a company with as much physical infrastructure as Amazon - which delivers more than 10 billion items a year - can meet the Paris agreement 10 years early, then any company can". In February, Amazon announced it would make half of all its shipments carbon neutral by 2030 by using more eco-friendly packaging, using more renewable energy like wind power, as well as using electric vans for package deliveries.

Amazon's announcement comes a day before the company is expected to lose hundreds of members of its workforce when employees walk out as part of the youth-driven Global Climate Strike.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos speaks during his news conference at the National Press Club in Washington, Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019. The company has already score $500 million in funding from Ford and another $750 million from Amazon.

Bezos said: 'The global strike tomorrow, I think it's totally understandable. According to Reuters, Amazon says it will start making deliveries with Rivian vans in 2021.

Bezos defended Amazon's work with oil and gas companies, arguing that "we need to help them instead of vilify them", and said Amazon would take a "hard look" at campaign contributions to climate deniers.

"We're done being in the middle of the herd on this issue-we've made a decision to use our size and scale to make a difference", said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO.

The order is a major coup for a company that is aiming to launch its R1T plug-in pickup and R1S sport utility vehicle late next year.

A proposal that the company report how it plans to deal with climate change received only 29.8% of votes at the shareholder meeting, despite signatures in support from almost 7,700 employees.

Latest News