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Tech giants pledge to keep children out of cobalt mines that supply smartphone and electric-car batteries

Tech giants pledge to keep children out of cobalt mines that supply smartphone and electric-car batteries | Sustainable Procurement News | Scoop.it
Apple, HP, Samsung SDI and Sony have joined an effort known as the Responsible Cobalt Initiative. It is being led by a Chinese business group, the Chinese Chamber of Commerce for Metals, Minerals and Chemicals Importers and Exporters, and supported by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), according to the Chinese group.

Members of the initiative pledged to follow OECD guidelines for mining supply chains, which call for companies to trace how cobalt is being extracted, transported, manufactured and sold. Any abuses would require immediate correction.
EcoVadis's insight:

Several leading technology companies are launching initiatives to stop abusive practices in their supply chain; how are you engaging yourself?

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This is where your smartphone battery begins

This is where your smartphone battery begins | Sustainable Procurement News | Scoop.it
The Post traced this cobalt pipeline and, for the first time, showed how cobalt mined in these harsh conditions ends up in popular consumer products. It moves from small-scale Congolese mines to a single Chinese company — Congo DongFang International Mining, part of one of the world’s biggest cobalt producers, Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt — that for years has supplied some of the world’s largest battery makers. They, in turn, have produced the batteries found inside products such as Apple’s iPhones — a finding that calls into question corporate assertions that they are capable of monitoring their supply chains for human rights abuses or child labor.
EcoVadis's insight:

Scary to see how locals are paying the price for multinationals greediness. 

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State Department signals interest in how tech companies address abuses in cobalt supply chain

State Department signals interest in how tech companies address abuses in cobalt supply chain | Sustainable Procurement News | Scoop.it
The attention from State comes as industry groups have recently launched two initiatives aimed at curbing child labor and other dangerous practices in their cobalt supply chains. Cobalt is essential for the lithium-ion batteries used in smartphones, laptops and electric vehicles. Sixty percent of the world’s supply of cobalt comes from Congo, which has a long history of loose regulation of mines.
EcoVadis's insight:

Great to see that the U.S. government is taking an increased interest in how American technology companies plan to address human rights abuses

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Tech Giants Look the Other Way on Rights Abuses Stemming From Cobalt Mining in Congo

Tech Giants Look the Other Way on Rights Abuses Stemming From Cobalt Mining in Congo | Sustainable Procurement News | Scoop.it
The Democratic Republic of Congo is paying the price for being the world’s largest producer of raw cobalt, a vital ingredient in lithium-ion batteries for electric cars, smartphones, laptops and other rechargeable devices. As Congolese search for the valuable mineral—cobalt is the most expensive part of lithium-ion batteries—they are suffering a surge in child labor, poverty, pollution and rare birth defects.
EcoVadis's insight:

Companies may want to get away from the problem existing in their supply chain but the problem is still there. Do you have your eyes wide open on the subject and are you reacting to that in your business? 

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