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9 Jan 2017

Peter Whoriskey, Washington Post

Insufficient monitoring of supply chains by large battery manufacturers exposed

„Tesla aims to sustain purity of car batteries, but can any company be sure?”, 30 December 2016

…[T]he electric-vehicles revolution…depends on an immense escalation in the world’s capacity to manufacture lithium-ion batteries, and the race for the raw materials to build those batteries is creating strains for people and the environment far from Silicon Valley, a Washington Post investigation has found…[T]he manufacture of lithium-ion batteries…is linked to child labor in cobalt mines in Congo, severe air and water pollution around graphite plants in China and complaints of mistreatment of indigenous communities near lithium deposits in South ­America. The mining companies tied to these problems supply some of the largest manufacturers of ­lithium-ion batteries…And some of those battery makers directly supply Tesla and other big tech giants. In response to these concerns, Tesla denied that the sources of its battery materials are tainted by abuses [but] declined to identify what those sources are…The Post investigation showed that large consumer companies may not know where the raw materials come from…

[Also refers to: Apple, BTR, Coremax, LG Chem, Panasonic, Sales de Jujuy, Samsung, Sumitomo Group, Umicore, Zhejiang Huayou]