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What is cobalt?

Cobalt is a hard, brittle metal that occurs naturally in the environment and is a common by-product of nickel and copper mining activities. Humans are using this metal more than ever, mainly due to its use within lithium-ion batteries which power portable consumer products such as mobile phones, laptops and tablets.

Where is cobalt found?

While it can be mined in Australia, the primary source of cobalt is the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Here lays the global concern surrounding the ethical sourcing of this metal

The response to cobalt sourcing

It is well documented that unsafe and unethical cobalt-mining practices exist in the Congo. Thousands of miners including children, dig by hand in harsh and dangerous conditions where death and injury is common. This exploitation is in stark contrast to the minimum standards of acceptable ethics, conduct and basic human rights we see here in Australia – and Western countries are responding.

Major manufacturers are transitioning away from their reliance on cobalt and establishing tougher standards on labour within their supply chains. As a result, various battery companies have taken steps to improve extraction conditions, or to embark on a completely cobalt-free path.

AlmaCrawler is focused on understanding the needs and expectations within our industry, to enhance the overall customer experience. Ethical business and sustainability are now key differentiators, and we are working hard to ensure that we have constant transparency and visibility within our supply chains.

AlmaCrawler are proud to be partnered with Aliant Battery for the supply of their cobalt-free lithium iron phosphate batteries throughout the AlmaCrawler Lithium range.

In 2020, Aliant Battery embarked on a journey to offer the market a range of rechargeable lithium batteries based on lithium iron phosphate (LFP technology (LiFePO4)) – completely free of cobalt. Close partnerships with cell manufacturers made it possible to develop alternative solutions in terms of chemistry, completely renouncing the presence of cobalt.  LiFePO4 technology was chosen due to its high energy density and fast-charging capability, ensuring that the removal of cobalt was not detrimental to the performance of the battery.

On 1 January 2022, all batteries produced from Aliant Battery became totally cobalt-free.

AlmaCrawler will continue to work with its suppliers to ensure sustainable sourcing, reduced environmental impacts and improved recycling processes for the industry’s future. 

For optimum protection and unbeatable performance, contact Bob Mules on 0402 982 999 or online here.