A cheery thought for New Year! But the fact is many of the devices we use to access the internet, and read this blog, contain materials that are mined on some of the planet’s worst conflict zones.
In places like the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), people including children are sometimes forced into clave labour to mine these minerals to fund the warlords.
The problem for you and me the end consumer, is a lack of transparency in the supply chain. China imports the materials from the DRC and elsewhere for example. Then Western Companies contract China to make our mobile devices etc, by which point it is conveniently impossible to say which materials came from where.
The solution of course is for the IT Industry to get its act together on consumers’ behalf to create transparency, before we consumers have to choose to stop using the technology instead, and we all have to stop blogging!