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The UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) kicks off on Sunday, and ahead of it some of tech's biggest companies are announcing new initiatives. Amazon is investing in three companies working on creating sustainable technology as part of its $2 billion Climate Pledge Fund.
The first of these companies is Resilient Power, a company working to make delivering electricity from the power grid and delivering it to electric vehicle charging stations more efficient. The company appears primarily focused on fleets — think businesses that need to deploy vehicles en masse, like shipping services — rather than individual vehicles. The company claims it can build out EV fast-charging stations at one-tenth the standard size and installation time as current stations. Naturally, an efficient, fast-charging solution for fleets of delivery vehicles is something that could be directly relevant to Amazon. It also could relate to the company's existing investment in EV maker Rivian, which could plausibly make EVs for Amazon delivery services down the line.
The second company, CMC Machinery, can design and manufacture custom-fit boxes for whatever items need to go inside, without waste like extra space and single-use padding materials. Again, the benefit to Amazon is obvious here — if the company is going to continue to ship things at the rate it currently does, reducing the amount of packaging waste the company produces would be significant.
Finally, a company called Infinium is working on renewable fuel technology as an alternative to traditional diesel and jet fuels. The company claims its Infinium Electrofuels are "ultra-low carbon fuels that can be used in air transport, marine freight, and heavy truck fleets." This marks Amazon's second investment round in Infinium, and it'll be used to help develop facilities for producing the company's fuel. Amazon also says that this investment will help the company actually deliver its fuel for the first time, which would be a pretty major milestone.
With these three new companies, Amazon is now supporting 11 total companies with its Climate Pledge Fund, a key component in its plan to eliminate net carbon emissions by 2040. Given that goal, it makes sense that these investments are in companies that can directly help Amazon reduce its carbon footprint. With COP26 about to start, both Apple and Microsoft have also made announcements around moves they're making to become more eco-friendly. Apple, which plans to be carbon-neutral by 2030, announced it has "more than doubled" the number of suppliers committed to using clean energy. Microsoft, meanwhile, is hoping to reduce data center water consumption by 95 percent by 2024, just a few short years from now.