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HashCash Partners Consortium To Track Battery Minerals On Blockchain

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U.S.-based Blockchain startup HashCash Consultants has teamed up with a consortium of global automobile manufacturers, mining companies and battery manufacturers to track ethical sourcing of battery minerals such as cobalt, tungsten, and lithium using Blockchain technology.

The sourcing of these minerals, the main components in the production of car batteries, has been for a long time under the scanner for the alleged use of child labor for their mining operations.

The use of blockchain will help track the materials through its supply chain network to provide transparency and traceability from the mine to the manufacturing unit, and beyond. The system will help prove the ethical sourcing of the minerals.

This move comes on the back of several press reports of the alleged use of child labor in the artisanal mining operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo or DRC. The DRC houses more than two-thirds of the world's cobalt reserves and other minerals such as tungsten, tin, etc., which are used in battery manufacturing.

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) estimated in 2014 that approximately 40,000 children worked in mines across southern DRC.

The demand for authentication of the provenance and ethical sourcing of these minerals are currently on the rise. HashCash aims to establish a Blockchain network for the mineral supply chain to address this demand from customers.

The minerals that are produced at the mines in DRC will be traced throughout the supply chain as it journeys from the mine and smelter to the cathode/battery plant and then ultimately to the auto manufacturers.

HashCash is creating a Blockchain ecosystem with all the participants in the supply chain, for more transparency and traceability in the operations, with a validation process of all the participants and use of smart contracts.

HashCash's Blockchain network will create an audit trail syncing with the immutable records with all details of mineral production and each stage that follows in the supply chain. This will make the entire process faster and significantly reduce operational costs.

Earlier in the month, Volvo Cars Group became the first carmaker to announce the use of blockchain technology to trace the cobalt used in lithium ion batteries used for its electric cars.

The carmaker is providing traceability of raw materials, such as cobalt, used in the production of the batteries used in its cars as part of its commitment to provide its customers the information that materials for the batteries has been sourced responsibly.

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