The intention of the cargo airline Amazon Global Air to have a mega-hub at the New Jersey international airport continues to face rejection from a coalition of organizations, which today demanded an agreement that would allow the company rehabilitates and lease two buildings at that facility for its operations.
“Amazon listens, we are in the fight. Amazon pollutes the air, exploits workers and that’s why Amazon, get out,” they shouted at a protest called by the coalition of community and environmental organizations, which have the support of political leaders. and religious.
According to the groups, if the agreement is finalized, it would mean great traffic, both by air and by the passage of trucks, generating more environmental pollution. They also object to low-paid jobs with no benefits for this airline of the US e-commerce giant Amazon.
In August 2021, the board of directors of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey announced that it had authorized a 20-year lease agreement with Amazon Global Air for two buildings that would rehabilitate a cost of 125 million dollars to convert them into modern cargo center at Newark Liberty International Airport.
As part of the deal, the company would make a $150 million down payment and $157 million over the 20-year lease and is expected to create about 1,000 jobs, which was welcomed by the Democratic governor of New Jersey. PhilMurphy.
The activists allege that it was a “secret” agreement without giving the community the opportunity to be heard.
“I have worked in our community as a (merchandise) delivery person for years. I am here because I am concerned about the impact that the growth of Amazon will have on my salary and also on the air and the streets of our neighborhood,” said Anny González during the protest.
The environmental organization Clean Water highlighted that without good wages and benefits, Amazon workers and their families have very limited options to secure quality affordable housing, buy healthy food, live in healthier neighborhoods, and have access to health care.
According to the group, environmental and economic justice are integrally linked: “you cannot achieve one without the other.”
“We meet again today because we will not tolerate injustice. And we will defeat injustice by listening to those most affected by trucks, pollution, and bad jobs. We are by your side and we are with you,” Father Timothy Graff, of the Archdiocese of Newark, told the protesters.
Various local officials representing the communities surrounding the airport, including Newark Mayor Ras Baraka; Elizabeth Mayor Chris Bollwage, and state Sen. Joe Cryan have expressed concern and opposition to the proposed deal, according to a statement from the community organization Make the Road New Jersey, part of the coalition.