Apple plans to use more responsible gold in future products after teaming up with environmental group Resolve.
Salmon Gold sourced from placer mining operations in Alaska will enter Apple’s supply chain this fall, and will be traceable from mine to refiner using blockchain technology.
Hundreds of placer mining operations, sited along creeks and streams, are being used to re-mine for nuggets and fine gold left over from the Yukon’s Klondike Gold Rush in the late 1890s.
What makes Resolve’s placer miners special is that they’re not just in it for the gold.
Resolve is also teaming up with environmentalists and government agencies with an effort called Salmon Gold. It works to correct the damage done to salmon runs in the region by gold mining.
Apple wants more responsible gold
“Salmon Gold is like a peace treaty between mining and salmon habitat,” said Stephen D’Esposito, CEO of Resolve. “It’s a place where the three sectors can work together: the restoration community, First Nations and the mining industry.”
This aligns nicely with Apple’s effort to be a more environmentally-friendly company, so the iPhone-maker is teaming up with Resolve and Tiffany & Co. to acquire more responsible gold.
“As we continue to increase our use of recycled materials, we’re seeking out innovative ways to source gold responsibly,” says Paula Pyers, Apple’s head of Supplier Responsibility.
“Partnering with Tiffany, a pioneer in sustainable sourcing, as well as RESOLVE ensures Salmon Gold can be an example of how the industry can evolve.”
An example for future miners
The Salmon Gold miners are working to create a sustainable model that future miners can follow. Resolve has already secured restoration plans with three miners in Alaska and the Yukon, and more are under consideration for next summer.
Resolve predicts that more than 1,000 ounces of Salmon Gold will be produced this year — a huge increase over the 25 ounces produced last summer. And every bit of it that enters Apple’s supply chain will be traceable from mine to refiner.