BMW is collaborating with a blockchain startup to apply the technology for tracking the cobalt used in its batteries, Reuters reports. The German car manufacturer will rely on blockchain to ensure its cobalt is ethically sourced. BMW will be assisted by London-based Circulor on this project.
Most electric vehicles have cobalt in their batteries. The problem is that more than 65% of the global supply comes from the Democratic Republic of Congo, where 20% of the metal is extracted in unregulated mines. Since Circulor specializes in supply chain management, it will help BMW ensure that its electric cars do not use cobalt from unregulated mines, where child labor and other illegalities might be present.