Recently, Microsoft has been making headlines for all the wrong reasons. Earlier this week, the company had to shut down its New York flagship store because of protectors demanding Microsoft to cancel their contract with ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement). In case you have been living under a rock, ICE has been under attack for deporting and mistreating people in the US under the Trump administration. A year back, even Microsoft employees requested the company to cancel their contract with ICE. The contract valued at $19.4 million is one of the more expensive contracts Microsoft has with the government. However, citizens and even Microsoft employees are not comfortable being a part of profiting done by ICE.
While all that has been going on, Microsoft went ahead and announced a partnership with Chevron to accelerate Oil extraction. This definitely adds salt to the wound as the partnership was announced just a day before the Global Climate Strike. Again, in case you are living under a rock, the Global Climate Strike is scheduled to take place around the world and is led by youngsters demanding companies to change their stance on the production and use of fossil fuels. On September 10, Microsoft Workers 4 Good tweeted that they stand by Google and Amazon employees’ decision to join the Climate Strike.
Microsoft workers will be joining millions of people around the world by participating in the youth-led Global Climate Strike on September 20th to demand an end to the age of fossil fuels. Microsoft workers, join us by pledging to take action at https://t.co/KL3e0xKyYR
— Microsoft Workers 4 Good (@MsWorkers4) September 9, 2019
Not only that, but Microsoft employees even published a fiery statement on GitHub condemning the partnership and calling their co-workers to join the strike on 20th September. The new project is designed to use Microsoft’s Azure cloud services to improve the speed at which oil companies can develop new sites as well as the rates of extraction at the existing sites. The partnership is literally based on burning more oil which in turn will increase the carbon emissions.
An anonymous employee at Microsoft told Gizmodo that he was “enraged” by the announcement. “To me it really highlights where Microsoft’s priorities are,” he said. “Needless to say, it is money that drives the company and its actions. But this is starting to be at the expense of our planet.”
— Microsoft Workers 4 Good (@MsWorkers4) September 18, 2019
This is ironic especially since Microsoft Co-Founder Bill Gates has made Climate Change a central focus of his philanthropy and in the meantime, Microsoft is literally adding gasoline to the fire. While Bill Gates no longer involves himself into the operation of the company, we did expect a statement from him regarding Microsoft’s decision to help accelerate Climate Change.