Video report by ITV correspondent Richard Pallot
Another whistleblower came forward, alleging Amazone dumps thousands of unsold items, a day after ITV News revealed the scale of the retail giant’s waste.
The unsold items, for the most part perfectly usable, were marked for destruction, forcing the government to go directly to Amazon.
It has also caught the attention of environmental activist Greta Thunberg and Prime Minister Boris Johnson has publicly expressed his concern.
Speaking anonymously, a former Amazon employee at a center in Hertfordshire said the problem was widespread at the company.
“A lot of things, from brand new iPhones to PlayStations, we’ve got rid of brand new books,” he told ITV News.
“You felt like you just wanted to tell them ‘listen, this should be for people who need it, not in the trash.’ “
When asked if he thought unsold items were thrown away in other centers, he replied, “In every facility it happens, believe me, it does.
“I worked in a specific establishment, but I knew other people who worked in others and they said the exact same thing. “
Chelaine Young, a mother from south London, was in desperate need of a laptop to house school her children.
“I think it’s absolutely disgusting, during lockdown we obviously had to do distance learning,” she told ITV News.
“Amazon is throwing away so many electronic devices that could go to different families, social care homes and it could help so many other families rather than just throwing them away and ignoring them, it’s terrible. “
For months, her children had lessons via her phone.Damian Griffiths of Catbytes, a nonprofit that promotes digital learning in South London communities, said it was ‘total waste’.
Filming under cover from the inside Amazon’s Dunfermline warehouse reveals scale of waste, which includes smart TVs, laptops, books and thousands of sealed face masks – all sorted in boxes marked “destroy.”
Sam Chetan Welsh of Greenpeace described it as “an unimaginable amount of unnecessary waste”.
He added, “As long as Amazon’s business model is built on this kind of culture of elimination, things will only get worse. The government must step in and pass legislation immediately. “
Amazon, which does nothing illegal by destroying unsold items, said: “Amazon does everything possible to resell or donate laptops to good causes.
“There are many reasons why laptops cannot be resold or donated, such as if they are damaged in any way, pose a potential safety hazard, or are returned containing personal information. “
‘It’s a scandal’: Environmental Audit Committee Chairman Philip Dunne Says Amazon Must Tackle The Problem
Amazon says its policy is that all electronic products that cannot be sold or donated are sent for recycling, not energy recovery.Philip Dunne, chairman of the environmental audit committee, criticized Amazon for its “scandal”.
He told ITV News: “Amazon appeared before the select environmental audit committee last year and proclaimed its sustainability credentials.
“What your report reveals is a truly astonishing degree of waste of resources. And if that’s true, it’s a scandal that Amazon needs to tackle. “
He added: “What this reveals, if this is true, is that this global online giant is consuming resources on this planet in a totally unsustainable way.
“Of course, some products are returned and must be treated, but to have a virgin product in its packaging, never sold to consumers and then destroyed either to be incinerated or potentially to be landfilled is a completely outrageous theft of the planet.
“Frankly, Mr. Bezos should spend less time dreaming of going to space and more time addressing the environmental damage his business is causing to the planet. ”