Home Industries Services Case Studies Blogs Custom Research Syndicate Services About Us Contact us
Home Industries Services Case Studies Blogs Custom Research Syndicate Services About Us Contact us

Blood Batteries Driving Tech Revolution


Cobalt And Its Uses

Cobalt is a key component of the Lithium-Ion battery. Cobalt is a bluish-Gray metal found in crustal rocks. It has many applications in modern-day society. Besides batteries, cobalt metal is also used in high-speed cutting tools, magnetic steels, and in alloys used for making gas turbines and jet turbine generators. Previously, cobalt was only used as a colour pigment to get rich violet colours, blue, and green colours. At present, it is used in modern dyes as a colouring agent for clothes and in electroplating because of its resistance to corrosion, appearance, and hardness. Apart from this, cobalt also has some medicinal importance as it is made radioactive to be used in some medicines particularly used for treating cancer and as a biological tracer. However, most of the cobalt produced was used in the lithium io batteries last year and is expected to keep on increasing in the coming years.

Lithium-Ion batteries are used for powering laptops, cell phones, and electric vehicles. And these electronic gadgets are expected to increase the demand for Cobalt in the coming years. Cobalt is mined all over the world, but more than half of the global cobalt supply comes from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

What is the tech revolution and what are its needs?

Most of us support the revolution of technology produced from non-fossil fuels to power electric vehicles and make the life of some sections of society easy. The technological revolution is also supposed to help reduce some of the social issues such as corruption, environmental pollution, extreme poverty, and child Labour. But not much attention is given to the child Labour laws in many countries. The supply of cobalt for the production of lithium-ion batteries is the perfect combination of technological advancement and the fight for social issues. However, the technological revolution is supposed to make the lives of people better, not just for the lucky ones. The tech revolution in order to fulfil the rising demand for lithium io batteries for the electric vehicles and other electronic gadgets require Cobalt in large amount which is mostly mined in Congo. The new battery technologies and other physiochemical applications require rare metals like Lithium and Cobalt. Cobalt provides high energy density and stability that allows batteries to operate safely and for longer periods.

Cobalt Mining and Its Implication

Most of the Cobalt needed for the production of lithium-ion batteries is mined in Congo. Mostly children below 18 years of age work in these cobalt mines to make our lives luxurious and easy. Unfortunately, the Democratic Republic of Congo is filled with poverty, corruption, and conflict in the country. The economy of the country is completely dependent on cobalt mining. There are several families who do not even have food two times a day. So, in order to fill their empty stomachs, they allow their children to work in these mines. The money that they get by working for the full day mining cobalt from the underground mines is $9/day which is hard to resist for any family who does not have a full meal twice a day. As the cobalt is mined by small children who belong to the schooling age, the battery made from cobalt is referred to as the blood battery.

Explore Studies On Electric Scooter Market

Labour laws in Congo

Almost half of the Congo’s population is under 18 years. Child rights in Congo are improving with good access to education and many legal actions taken to protect the rights of children in Congo. However, there are several concerns regarding the children who Labour, girl children, and indigenous children still continue to experience violation of rights by the government and often face difficulty in meeting their basic needs. The poverty rate in the country increased drastically since 2016, as a result of the decline in oil prices.

However, child Labour is prohibited in Congo by national law. The minimum age set for working is 16 years. There are substantial policies and laws designed to protect children from exploitation. In spite of all these laws and regulations, informal child Labour continues to be a problem in Congo. Several children as young as 6 years old go to fields and mines to earn some money to feed their families. They work for more than 12 long hours to earn a little so that they can help feed their family. But many of them die at a young age because of health issues as they are exposed to extreme weather conditions and harmful gases in the underground mines.

Most of our electronic gadgets run on the blood of these innocent kids which these electronic gadgets bloody ones and the batteries are often referred to as blood batteries. But, the main fault here is of the government, as there are no punishments and trials for child Labour, and child Labour laws are not followed in Congo as the economy runs on these Cobalt mines. These lithium-ion batteries are required for even small devices including automobiles.

Top Companies Encouraging Child Labour To Earn A Fortune

Western tech giants like Apple, Tesla, GM, Samsung, and BMW consciously ignored the problems surrounding corruption and child Labour. Their main aim is to fulfil the growing demand of the customers and make fortune for themselves. Consumers' main aim is to get the latest gadgets and flaunt them. But they ignore the basics of the gadgets and the blood and sweat used in making those technologically advanced gadgets. The appalling work condition of children working in the cobalt mines has led to them being labelled as blood batteries. These automobile giants claim to have a zero-tolerance policy for child Labour, but they are also aware of the fact that they cannot map the entire supply chain of the manufactured products and services. The main aim of these companies is to fulfil the rising demand of the customers and make fortune out of the manufactured products. They forget to think about the people working at the zero level to make the final product a success among consumers.


It is very much important for the tech giants and the government of Congo to look after the lives of people working in cobalt mines and provide them protection against exploitation and corruption. If you care about carbon emission, you must also care about the global poverty and the desertification of large areas that it causes. We must think about the lives of people working in these mines to make our lives better. The working condition in these mines might not be born by any one of us, but the innocent children of Congo are working regularly in pathetic conditions to earn food to fill the empty stomach of their families. The total energy storage capacity in the world at present is lesser than the desired amount. This is increasing the pressure for new battery technologies by an enormous amount. The poorest on the planet are paying a heavy price to meet the needs of increasing batteries around the world. Approximately two million people in Congo rely on Cobalt mining. There are no Labour laws and safety protocols followed in the mines to protect the lives of people working in these mines. So, we cannot say that electric vehicles are cruelty-free. They are cruel in nature as they run on blood batteries.

Read Studies On Electric Vehicle