Are workers’ rights in the mines of the Democratic Republic of the Congo being sacrificed to the world’s hunger for cobalt?
The Responsible Sourcing Network has joined with the Department of Anthropology of the University of British Columbia to conduct a baseline study of “artisanal” and small-scale cobalt mines in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The DRC is the source of approximately 70% of the world’s cobalt, an essential element in many high-tech products, most notably electric vehicles. With EVs soaring in popularity, the demand for cobalt will only increase in the coming years, but how are those essential miners being treated? On this episode, we get a glimpse into conditions in the mines with the help of Raphaël Deberdt, minerals program associate with the RSN. He reveals what the study found about such crucial concerns as land rights, corruption, fraud, health and safety, use of child labor and environmental destruction. Can these thousands of small operations maintain visibility and protect human rights, even as the world clamors for cobalt? Hosted by Bob Bowman, Editor-in-Chief of SupplyChainBrain.
RSN’s Cobalt Baseline Study of artisanal mines in the DRC.
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