Climate Pledge Arena’s new name is significant

The hate-side of my love-hate relationship with Amazon grew from Amazon torpedoing my business back in 2001, wiping me out along with a few thousand other booksellers. The love-side, got elevated a few months ago. I may have found something to admire about Jeff Bezos.

With three big words, he did more than many politicians and analysts have done to elevate the climate issue in public consciousness. He bought naming rights to the renovated Seattle Center arena to publicize the greatest issue of our time. The home of the Seattle Kraken is not Amazon Arena but Climate Pledge Arena, reflecting Amazon’s membership in a club of concerned corporate leaders.

Of course it was good for business, too. Amazon needs to play nice to win the hearts and purchasing power of an even larger part of the world. But because of TV, press and web exposure to the Climate Pledge brand, millions of Americans will think more about the why and how of what a climate pledge means, that Apple, Ford, GM, FedEx, IKEA, and the rest of the more than 200 members have bound themselves to be carbon-neutral by 2040. This is more than advertising.

Anyone not frightened by recent evidence of environmental degradation is deaf, blind and ignorant. Drought-stressed cedar and hemlock forests, shellfish wipeouts from heat, drought-driven masses pressing at our border, plummeting salmon stocks, starving marine mammals, uncontrollable wildfires. Because of the immediacy of the problem, I welcome help from every quarter, even the company that put me out of business.

I hope the Climate Pledge Arena sign on what used to be Key Arena will stimulate all of us to think deeply about the direct and indirect roles ways we play in messing up the planet. It is good that Climate Challenge corporations are sounding the alarm but that will do no good if we don’t answer the call. The one thing we cannot do, is do nothing.

Good move, Jeff. (But you’re not forgiven.)

Robert Graef

Mill Creek

Talk to us

More in Opinion

FILE - In this Jan. 6, 2021, file photo, violent insurrectionists loyal to President Donald Trump scale the west wall of the the U.S. Capitol in Washington. Two Seattle police officers who were in Washington, D.C., during the January 6 insurrection were illegally trespassing on Capitol grounds while rioters stormed the building, but lied about their actions, a police watchdog said in a report released Thursday, July 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana, File)
Editorial: Electoral Count Act needs bipartisan reforms now

Changes to the 135-year-old law may prevent future attempts to overturn elections.

Editorial cartoons for Wednesday, Aug. 17

A sketchy look at the news of the day.… Continue reading

The COVID-19 ward at Providence Regional Medical Center Everett in May 2020. (Andy Bronson / Herald file) 20200519
Editorial: Nurses and hospitals need our care, support now

The pandemic has taken a toll on Providence and its nurses. Changes are needed to restore all.

Melinda Parke sits inside her Days Inn motel room as her son, Elijah, sleeps on his chair behind her Wednesday, April 20, 2022, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Editorial: Purchase of hotel as shelter can be effective tool

The county’s investment of federal aid will serve those who need shelter and supportive services.

Teresa Reynolds sits exhausted as members of her community clean the debris from their flood ravaged homes at Ogden Hollar in Hindman, Ky., Saturday, July 30, 2022. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)
Editorial: How many billion-dollar disasters will it take?

A tally of climate disasters shows an ever-increasing toll of costs and lives. Congress must act.

Glad to see inclusive report on Navy ships return to port

When I picked up my Daily Herald from my porch this morning,… Continue reading

Democrats aren’t you tired of all this?

Someone once told me that hitting yourself on the head with a… Continue reading

Let’s join essay writer in not tolerating bad behavior

Kudos to Tyler Rourke for his eloquent description of a recent family… Continue reading

Brittney Griner broke law and admitted guilt

“When in Rome, do as the Romans do.” In other words, play… Continue reading

Most Read