View Full Version : "4 Year Olds Mining Cobalt to Power Your Devices

03-05-2018, 04:23 PM


"Report: There Are 4 Year Olds Mining Cobalt to Power Your Devices

A CBS News investigation has found children as young as 4 years old are being used to mine for cobalt in the Democratic Republic of Congo—the source of half of the world’s supply of the battery mineral that powers everything from Apple iPhones and other handheld devices to laptops and Tesla’s electric vehicles. An Amnesty International report released Monday found young children laboring in every part of the DRC supply chain, with Chinese middlemen buying the supply from local miners. An Amnesty report in 2016 found that tech giants—including Apple, Samsung, and Sony—were using cobalt mined by children in the DRC in their devices; a 2017 follow-up report concluded that the companies had failed to properly address their use of child labor in raw-materials gathering. DRC officials denied the use of child labor within cobalt supply chains in their country, but CBS reporters found many child laborers out in the open."


03-05-2018, 04:49 PM
That's incredibly fucked up.

03-05-2018, 05:53 PM
Living in Pennsylvania many years ago, it was not unusual to run across someone who had worked in the coal mines as a child. This is where I first heard the locals refer to the term doggy mine. It is a shaft that is so low in height that only a child or a doggy would fit. I lived in approximately the same area from which these fotos were taken.


03-05-2018, 08:22 PM
To a historian, the world can be a place where humans have found inventive solutions to many social problems.
Only to forget them and have the problems occur again, with bewilderment as to how they can be solved.

In most cases the problems were solved for the European mainstream in the Old Country or in the New World, frequently more than 100 years ago.
Recurrences are in other countries, or too often, those marginalised within our own; often with people struggling at the bottom, or with a different background, or from the first nations of the lands we have colonised. Sometimes they are in another country struggling to achieve a standard of living and like here, their burden is to be providing something to support our lifestyle.

I have also found cases of cost effective, humane solutions to problems in struggling countries that would greatly benefit those at the top, and yet these solutions are ignored in favour of untried measures of dubious worth.

A definition of "politician in power" as someone who ignores every solution shown in the past or elsewhere to deliver good outcomes is unfortunately so often accurate.

Still, this leaves a gap.
There is at least one charity here that employs one of these solutions itself.
To the benefit of many.
And some individuals and communities who volunteer to contribute others.