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Today in Cleantech

Recently, a report from Global Witness cast the computer and consumer electronics industries in an unflattering light.  Put simply, they are accused of indirectly fueling the civil war and promoting unsafe working conditions in the Democratic Republic of Congo by procuring “conflict minerals” sourced from the region.  Time picked up on the report, evoking parallels to blood diamonds and giving the story exposure and momentum.  Some technology companies have policies in place to avoid Congolese minerals. Watchers fear, however, that most well-meaning firms will find it hard to unravel the tangled web of middlemen that is a hallmark of multinational mining concerns. Nokia is the exception.  The cell phone maker, unlike many of its peers, takes a hands-on approach to its supply chains.