The Fair Cobalt Alliance is an initiative that is working to improve conditions in the small-scale cobalt mining industry in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Munich, August 24, 2020 – Sono Motors became the first electric vehicle manufacturer to join the Fair Cobalt Alliance, an initiative to drive fairer supply of cobalt by improving the conditions in small-scale mining in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The company will be an ambassador for the project and will also have a voice in decisions on the implementation of measures in the project area. Through the support of the alliance, the company wants to increase transparency in the cobalt supply chain for its own Solar Electric Vehicle, Sion, in the medium term. In the long term, the company seeks to integrate fair cobalt into its own supply chain.
Launched by Fairphone, Signify, Huayou Cobalt and The Impact Facility, the Fair Cobalt Alliance pursues three specific objectives in close cooperation with the Congolese government and civil society:
- Drive the supply of fairer cobalt by supporting the professionalisation of small-scale mining management and creating safer and more environmentally responsible sites.
- Establish credible control and monitoring mechanisms to keep children out of the mines and support the enrolment of children into school, in order to effectively prevent child labour in the supply chain.
- Combat poverty among families dependent on cobalt mining by supporting projects aimed at creating a sustainable livelihood, for example by promoting education, agriculture or entrepreneurship
"As an electric vehicle manufacturer whose clear goal is to make mobility fairer and even more environmentally friendly, it is our responsibility to also address the downside of battery technology. With the Fair Cobalt Alliance, we are tackling the root of the problem and promoting a responsible mining of cobalt, which is an essential component of electric car batteries. It is part of Sono Motors' vision to be a role model, and we hope for other companies in the mobility industry to follow and join the alliance," says Jona Christians, CEO and co-founder of Sono Motors.
In addition to Sono Motors, Glencore and Lifesaver are also joining the alliance today. The entire press release by the Fair Cobalt Alliance is available for download below.
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What started out as the vision of a sustainable mobility concept which was not dependent on fossil fuels became the innovative and owner-managed company Sono Motors in 2016. Today, an experienced specialist team is developing a forward-looking electric car that is suitable for daily use, with integrated solar cells and innovative mobility services, the Sion. To date, more than 12,300 people have reserved and partially paid for the vehicle.
Sono Motors is also taking a completely new approach to financing. With the close involvement of the Sono Motors community, the company completed one of the most successful Community Funding Campaigns in Europe in January 2020 with 53 million euros.