Tim Cook Sends Memo to Apple Staff Condemning Departure From Paris Agreement
Cook, Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg, and Microsoft's Satya Nadella all attended a meeting with Trump prior to his inauguration, while Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Uber CEO Travis Kalanick joined some of Trump's advisory councils. While Kalanick eventually resigned from the council, Musk remained on board, arguing that he'd have better luck swaying Trump's thinking if he kept his seat.
Musk resigned from the council today
following Trump's announcement on the
Trump's positions on immigration and
In an email to Apple staff obtained by Gizmodo, Cook said he spoke to President Trump on Tuesday and tried to convince him to keep the US in the agreement. "But it wasn't enough," Cook wrote.
Cook went on to reaffirm Apple's commitment to the environment and renewable energy:
We power nearly all of our operations with renewable energy, which we believe is an example of something that's good for our planet and makes good business sense as well.
We will keep working toward the ambitious goals of a closed-loop supply chain, and to eventually stop mining new materials altogether. Of course, we're going to keep working with our suppliers to help them do more to power their businesses with clean energy. And we will keep challenging ourselves to do even more.
Zuckerberg promised similar commitments to renewable energy in a Facebook post .
"Withdrawing from the Paris climate agreement is bad for the environment, bad for the economy, and it puts our children's future at risk," he wrote. "For our part, we've committed that every new data center we build will be powered by 100% renewable energy."
Like Cook, Microsoft president Brad Smith said his company lobbied the Trump administration to remain in the agreement, trying to persuade him there was a "business case" for doing so.
"Microsoft believes that climate change is an urgent issue that demands global action. We have a longstanding commitment to sustainability, which includes operating 100 percent carbon neutral and setting goals to increase the amount of green energy to power our operations," Smith wrote in a post . "We all live on a small planet and every nation needs to work with others to protect it."
If Trump's attempts at a travel ban weren't enough of a wake up call for the industry, his actions today should be. As Musk seems to have learned, a seat at the table doesn't help much if no one at that table is listening. Tech industry leaders are going to have to find other ways of championing the causes they care about, because it appears that America's businessman-in-chief isn't very impressed by them after all.