Your iPhone is driving Apple to desperate measures in a race that’s bad for the planet

Tech 6 days ago Mashable 17

The work is not easy at the Kamoto Underground Mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where laborers — some of them children — spend long hours each day retrieving copper and separate it from the more lucrative and rare metal known as cobalt. 

This mine is one of many such facilities in the DRC, an unstable country with a poor human rights record that dominates the world market for rare metals. Some of the cobalt mined in the DRC is refined domestically, and some is shipped to Asia, where it is refined into a form that’s useful for cutting-edge electronics.

And that refined cobalt is probably in your phone right now, and, if you own an electric car, it’s also in your vehicle’s battery.  Read more...

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