Amazon invests Rs 20.7 Bn in Indian nature-based projects

01 Sep 2023

E-commerce giant Amazon is investing an initial Rs 20.7 billion in nature-based projects in India as part of its commitment to allocate Rs 1.2 billion for such initiatives across the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region.

The first portion of this funding, Rs 20.7 billion, will support nature-based projects in India, starting with a partnership between Amazon and the Centre for Wildlife Studies (CWS). This collaboration focuses on aiding local communities and conservation efforts in the Western Ghats, a region home to over 30 per cent of India's wildlife species, including wild Asiatic elephants and tigers.

Amazon's contribution of Rs 82 million will help establish the "Wild Carbon" program by CWS, assisting 10,000 farmers in planting and nurturing one million fruit-bearing, timber, and medicinal trees.

Kara Hurst, Amazon's Global VP for Sustainability, stressed the Asia-Pacific region's vulnerability to climate change, biodiversity loss, and land degradation, highlighting the need for comprehensive action. Amazon's investment is aimed at protecting the region from climate change impacts and preserving biodiversity.

This funding is drawn from Amazon's Right Now Climate Fund, a Rs 7.3 billion initiative launched in 2019 to support nature conservation, enhance climate resilience, promote biodiversity, and provide social and environmental benefits to communities in Amazon's operational areas.

Amazon's support for the "Wild Carbon" program will create a self-sustaining initiative. Farmers will receive upfront support to select tree species beneficial to their livelihoods and wildlife. They will also receive technical assistance, agroforestry training, and replanting support for saplings that don't thrive.

Amazon is committed to environmental sustainability, participating in The Climate Pledge, co-founded in 2019, to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2040, a decade ahead of the Paris Agreement. Amazon India is actively working on renewable energy goals, aiming to power its global operations with 100 per cent renewable energy by 2025, five years ahead of the initial 2030 target. In 2022, the company initiated six utility-scale projects in India, contributing to a total renewable energy capacity of 920 megawatts. Amazon India also plans to deploy 10,000 electric vehicles in its delivery fleet by 2025.

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