Volvo Cars, based out of China, needs a regular supply of cobalt because of its use in EV batteries. However, the Cobalt was primarily obtained from Congo, which presented a massive social problem for EV users. Statistically, about two-thirds of the world’s Cobalt supply was from Congo.
Reportedly, due to the apparent increase in demand for cobalt, the miners in Congo have resorted to ‘child labor.’ Hence, the eco-friendly design of the future was adversely affecting the lives of children today.
Some organizations and protestors worked towards making it an important social cause. Hence, car companies were put under a lot of pressure to stop the purchase of cobalt from their African counterparts.
Volvo has deployed blockchain to map the source of the Cobalt to their factories. Moreover, apart from Congo, recycled Cobalt from China is another source which Volvo is benefiting from to produce EVs. Hence, blockchain will be used to verify the source of the Cobalt. It has also joined a project with the Government to monitor cobalt from the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Volvo said in an e-mailed comment to the media that,
“It tracked cobalt from a Chinese recycling plant to Volvo Cars Zhejiang over a two-month period to June 27,” Volvo said, adding its aim was “full transparency and traceability”.
Blockchain is an innovative and secure database that promises transparency and immutability. Circulor, a London based firm, has developed the blockchain for Volvo using one of Oracle’s blockchain designs.
Oracle, the US-based computer technology giant, has initiated a lot of Blockchain projects for the health-sector, supply-chain management, mineral tracking, to conserve the population of bees, and so on.
Walmart and Maersk, the two industry leaders, have also deployed blockchain to track, manage, and authenticate their supply-chain. Blockchain enables real-time transparency of all the relevant data to all the participants in the supply chain, in some cases, including the end customer.
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