ITU together with the United Nations University (UNU) has launched a report containing results of a Survey on Conflict Minerals Due Diligence Initiatives.
The report Greening ICT Supply Chains – Survey on Conflict Minerals Due Diligence Initiatives was launched during the forum on Greening ICT Supply Chain, which took place on 18 September 2012 in Paris, France as part of the second ITU GreenStandards Week.
International concern has been raised about the so-called Conflict Minerals issue,referring to minerals (namely tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold) mined in conditions of armed conflict and human rights abuses.
These minerals are key inputs for products of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) industry. Their sourcing from the African Great Lakes Region - one of the largest sources of these minerals - is taking place in the heart of two of the most important ecosystems on the planet: the Congo Basin Ecosystem and the Albertine Rift. Unsustainable management of how minerals are accessed, extracted, processed and transported can irreversibly endanger the surrounding environment.
While the conflict and human rights aspect of ICT supply chains originating from the African Great Lakes Region garners much of the current international attention, the environmental aspect has been overlooked.
This survey details existing initiatives (national and international legislation, as well as industry-, government- and multi-stakeholder led activities) aimed at providing the ICT sector with guidance to conduct due diligence on their supply chains to ensure that their sourcing of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold does not contribute to conflict and human rights violations and does not harm the environment.