Apple might have used illegally mined tin from Indonesia to manufacture its iPhones and some other products. At least, that’s what the international environmentalist group Friends of the Earth said recently.
According to the group’s website, tin mining on Bangka Island, in Indonesia, has been connected to “the destruction of tropical forests, coral reefs and fishermen’s livelihoods”. They also call “rotten Apple” to the company and demand for it to “come clean” about their suppliers, as you can see in this statement.
And this is not all. Apparently, environmental damages aren’t the only consequence of tin mining in the location. Like the Guardian revealed in 2012, this type of mining is largely unregulated and mostly depends on child labour, killing 150 miners every year.
This pressure has made Apple update its Supplier Responsibility webpage. The firm, which receives components with tin from 249 of its suppliers, started investigating the situation in Bangka Island with the help of the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition. Apple is now funding a new study into tin mining in the region to better understand the situation.
However, Friends of the Earth aren’t staying put while the company checks the accusations. Some members of the group have been going to Apple stores and putting special tags on products, which ask if the company has been using this particular tin. Also, the group states that Samsung has admitted to using tin from Bangka Island in its products, but has promised to stop.