As part of the company’s attempt to make all of its products carbon neutral by the end of the decade, Apple Inc. announced on Thursday that it will stop using virgin cobalt in batteries by 2025 and instead use exclusively recycled cobalt. According to the firm, the magnets that are used in Apple products will make use of recycled rare earth components, and the company’s in-house built printed circuit boards will make use of recycled tin soldering and gold plating.
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According to Apple, by the year 2030, the company intends to have achieved its goal of becoming carbon neutral throughout the entirety of its supply chain as well as the complete life cycle of every product. Additionally, on Tuesday, they increased their financial commitment to a fund that they had established two years prior with the intention of investing in initiatives that would remove carbon from the environment.
In the past, a variety of different technological businesses have been accused of being implicated in the tragic deaths of children living in the Democratic Republic of the Congo who were compelled to extract cobalt. The victims were youngsters who were working in cobalt mines. Cobalt is an element that is absolutely necessary for the production of the cells that are used in a large number of consumer electronics.
The majority of cobalt is generated as a by-product of the mining of copper or nickel; nevertheless, artisanal miners in the southern part of the Congo extract cobalt from deposits that are quite close to the surface. These deposits are particularly rich in cobalt.
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In 2022, 25% of all of the cobalt used in Apple products came from recycled material, which is an increase from the 13% figure reported the previous year. It is currently able to source over two thirds of all of the aluminium, almost three-quarters of all of the extremely rare earth, along with more than ninety-five percent of all of the tungsten that it employs in its goods from substance that can be recycled.