blog cover

Why 2024 Is The Year To Break Up With Amazon

By Canopey Team

Did you know a third of Brits feel guilty for shopping on Amazon?

It's no wonder: with their track record on the environment, tax avoidance and poor worker's rights, there's no end to the negative impact this ecommerce giant has on planet and people.

Next time someone tells you that Amazon actually has lots of great sustainability targets here's a couple of reason why it's all a bit of greenwash – and why 2024 is the year to boycott Amazon and choose a better way of buying.

Waste cardboard

1. Amazon is awful for the environment

A 2021 exposé by ITV News found that 130,000 items were being destroyed every week in just one of their UK warehouses. Items included laptops, TVs, headphones and books – in some cases still in their packaging.

Similar investigations in France and Germany found similar evidence of the practice there.

Amazon is also a big greenwasher, adding their Climate Pledge Friendly mark to products like single use batteries and wet wipes.

The company also launched its “Amazon Aware” product line in March 2023, and was immediately accused of greenwashing on a grotesque scale.

The range, which includes 103 products was found to have 20 of its items wrapped in single-use plastic, despite several of the products being delivered in the same box, The Telegraph reported.

And last year Amazon were dropped from the UN-backed Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTI). In fact, they were named and shamed by the organisation for failing to meet targets.

Black and white photo of pile of dollars

2. Tax avoidance

Ethical Consumer Magazine estimated that Amazon's tax avoidance could have cost the UK economy around half a billion pounds in 2021 alone.

Using that money, you could give £500 each to the poorest one million UK households to help with rising fuel bills.

A report by Unite the Union found that the company may have shifted as much as £8.2 billion from the UK to its subsidiary in Luxembourg in 2019.

Jeff Bezos face

3. The rich get richer

Amazon’s monopoly leads to huge disparities between regular people and the ultra wealthy.

Between March - September 2020, at a time when most businesses were struggling, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos saw his personal wealth increase so much that he could have given all 876,000 Amazon employees a bonus of $105,000 and be as wealthy as he was pre-pandemic.

Warehouse workers

4. Poor workers rights

Amazon has an awful track record when it comes to mistreating their staff; it’s no wonder staff in Coventry have 6 months of strikes planned.

Dystopian surveillance in warehouses, high rate of injuries and impossible targets which lead to employees having to urinate in bottles.

An Amazon delivery driver wrote in 2020, “I pee in a coffee cup every day, I have had termination or write up threats weekly. I go home in pain every day.”

Drone in blue sky

5. Investments into Israel

According to a Guardian article, nearly 400 Google and Amazon employees have signed an open letter with their concerns about a new project selling technology to the Israeli military and government.

The employees say that Project Nimbus is a $1.2bn contract to provide cloud services for the Israeli military and government.

An earlier Reuters' article says that Amazon is planning to invest $7.2 billion in Israel up to 2037, as it launches its Amazon Web Services (AWS) data centres in the country.

Canopey gifts products

Sick of Amazon?

Think a $1.3tn company can do better?

We do, too!

It's why we started Canopey: to offer real solutions to help everyone shop and live more sustainably without having to compromise on convenience.

All while learning more about how to make better, more eco-friendly lifestyle choices and reduce your CO2 emissions, plastic waste and water waste as a consumer.

We're building a platform for everyone, not just the 'eco warriors' out there – we bring everyone under the canopy, including an extra 'e'...

Our Canopey Impact Calculator helps you visualise and track the positive difference you're making, and our swaps, blogs and guides make it easier to learn about the issues affecting the planet – and how you can help.

So come and join us, and help us bin Bez*s, and buy better!