The following comes from an article in the New York Post, as well as Fox News.
Harvard visiting professor Siddharth Kara said there were no cobalt mines in the Congo that did not rely on child labor or slavery.
The Biden administration recently entered into an agreement with the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zambia to bolster the green energy supply chain, despite the DRC’s documented issues with child labor.
Cobalt initially “took off because it was used in lithium-ion batteries to maximize their charge and stability,” Kara explained. “And it just so happened that the Congo is sitting on more cobalt than the rest of the planet combined,” he added.
As a result, the Congo, a country of roughly 90 million people, became the center of a geopolitical conflict over valuable minerals. “Before anyone knew what was happening, [the] Chinese government [and] Chinese mining companies took control of almost all the big mines and the local population has been displaced,” Kara said. Subsequently, the Congolese are “under duress.”
He continued: “They dig in absolutely subhuman, gut-wrenching conditions for a dollar a day, feeding cobalt up the supply chain into all the phones, all the tablets, and especially electric cars.”
Some, if not all, of the famous tech and energy companies in the world are implicated in the humanitarian crisis, Kara said.
“This is the bottom of the supply chain of your iPhone, of your Tesla, of your Samsung,” he asserted.
Fox News’ Thomas Catenacci contributed to this report.