Report: EV battery making riddled with rights violations, environmental threats – by Subel Rai Bhandari (Radio Free Asia – May 16, 2023)

Companies including Panasonic, Tesla, and Toyota should check their supply chain, rights group says.

Human rights violations and environmental abuses were found in two nickel supply chains in the Philippines and Indonesia, home to more than half of the world’s supplies. They provide batteries to companies including Panasonic, Tesla, and Toyota, said a report released Tuesday by a rights research group.

The lack of transparency in electric vehicle battery supply chains means end-user companies must be held responsible, as they can easily distance themselves from the lower-level abuses and avoid addressing associated risks, the London-based Business & Human Rights Resource Centre (BHRRC) said in its report “Powering Electric Vehicles.”

The Rio Tuba Nickel Mining Corporation (Rio Tuba) in the Philippines, and Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt (ZHC) and CNGR Advanced Materials (CNGR), two Chinese companies operating in Indonesia, are responsible for “rising incidents of human and environmental rights violations,” the group said.

Their mining operations have direct adverse effects on local communities, including loss of food security, destruction of surrounding rainforests, water contamination, a detrimental impact on marine life, and respiratory and other health-related problems.

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