Excellent news from chipmaking giant Intel. CEO Brian M. Krzanich announced at CES that all of the microprocessors that it ships in 2014 will not contain conflict minerals.
The company reported that it “had achieved a critical milestone and the minerals used in microprocessor silicon and packages manufactured in Intel’s factories are ‘conflict-free’ as concluded by third-party audits or direct validation by Intel’s supply chain organization.”
Intel has implemented a process within its supply chain organization to validate that its sources – the smelters that provide tantalum, tin, tungsten and gold used in microprocessor silicon and packages manufactured in Intel factories – are not inadvertently funding this conflict in the DRC. Krzanich challenged the entire electronics industry to join Intel in its efforts.
In 2011, Intel and Apple joined the Conflict-Free Smelter program, lending their considerable clout to the effort. Intel has made tremendous progress, the fruits of which will be powering this year’s PCs, tablets and servers with the company’s chips.
“We felt an obligation to implement changes in our supply chain to ensure that our business and our products were not inadvertently funding human atrocities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Even though we have reached this milestone, it is just a start. We will continue our audits and resolve issues that are found,” said Krzanich.
For an understanding of how conflict minerals are helping to fuel a cycle of violence in the DRC, including the human toll, check out this infographic from Venkel. Over half of the revenues generated by mining tin ($80 million out of $130 million), just one of the 3TG (tungsten, tantalum, tin and gold) minerals, was used to fund the war in 2009.
via Engadget, Image credit: Intel