Apple has announced its plans to use only recycled cobalt in batteries by 2025 in an effort to achieve carbon neutrality for all its products by the end of the decade.
The company also incorporates other recycled materials into its products, such as recycled rare earth elements for magnets, recycled tin soldering, and gold plating for printed circuit boards.
Apple's initiative comes after tech companies were accused of complicity in the deaths of children in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where cobalt mining is prevalent. Most cobalt is produced as a by-product of copper or nickel mining, but artisanal miners in southern Congo exploit deposits near the surface that are rich in cobalt.
Apple has made progress in using recycled materials in its products, with a quarter of all cobalt used in its products coming from recycled material in 2022, up from 13% in the previous year.
The company now sources over two-thirds of all aluminium, nearly three-quarters of all rare earth, and more than 95% of all tungsten in its products from recycled material.
Apple is also doubling its financial commitment to a fund it had established two years ago to invest in projects that remove carbon from the atmosphere.