Sometime This Week Someone Will Die, Buried Alive, Mining For The Tin That Goes In Your mobile phone

Tin Mine

Photo: Tom H

Tin is used to solder parts in smartphones, tablet computers, and a bunch of other electronics that we all use all the time, every day.A third of the world’s tin comes from a place in Indonesia called Bangka Island.

About once week, someone mining for tin on Bangka Island dies, buried beneath mud or in some other similar accident.

The rate of accidents is increasing. Tin is getting scarcer, and mining companies are digging deeper, more dangerous mines to go after it.

Not all of these mining operations are legal, but no one is getting arrested.

Activists want mining companies and the electronics suppliers who buy from them to contribute to a fund that a third party will use to improve safety. The cause is slow-going.

We learned all this reading a story in BusinessWeek by Cam Simpson.

Obviously it has a lot more detail, which is worth knowing. Go check it out >

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