EARTHblog

Why we’re telling the Responsible Jewellery Council to clean up or shut down

July 28, 2015 • Shreema Mehta

Last week, we blogged about a Peruvian news investigation that linked American and European companies to illegal and destructive gold mining in the Amazon rainforest.

EARTHblog

The Jewelry Industry’s Role in Illegal Amazon Destruction

June 29, 2015 • Shreema Mehta

A recently published investigative report by Peruvian investigative news site OjoPúblico traced some of the dirtiest gold  — illegally extracted, mercury processed gold from the Amazon — to large American and European companies — including two certified by the Responsible Jewelry Council, a controversial, industry-exclusive gold and diamonds certification system.

EARTHblog

Coming Soon: A New Standard for More Responsible Mining

July 22, 2014 • Shreema Mehta

Earthworks is part of a multistakeholder group working to develop the world's first certification system for more responsible mining. Today, the group releases the first draft of the standards for public comment. Here's a message from the committee about these groundbreaking standards.

Media Releases

Industry controlled Responsible Jewellery Council fails to fulfill promise of preventing conflict diamonds and dirty gold

May 22, 2013 • Earthworks, et al

Trade unions and environmental groups team up to expose deep flaws in jewelry certification system

Washington, D.C., Ottawa, Geneva, Sydney, May 22, 2013 – In a new report, More Shine Than Substance: How RJC certification fails to create responsible jewelry, an international coalition of labor and environmental groups indict the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC)’s certification system as misleading jewelry consumers. The RJC holds its annual meeting in Milan on May 23.

“Jewelry is meant to lift our spirits.  But it loses its value if it’s made with gold or diamonds that are tarnished by human rights abuses or environmental destruction,” said Earthworks’ No Dirty Gold campaign director Payal Sampat. She continued, “Unfortunately, RJC’s certification cannot reassure consumers that the gems and precious metals that pass through its system did not come at the cost of community health or clean water.”  

The groups releasing More Shine Than Substance include the trade union federation, IndustriALL, which represents 50 million workers globally, CFMEU Australia, United Steelworkers, and environmental advocacy groups Earthworks and MiningWatch Canada.

 

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Publications

More Shine Than Substance

May 22, 2013 • Earthworks, et al

How RJC certification fails to create responsible jewelry

Publications

FACT SHEET: More Shine Than Substance

May 22, 2013 • Earthworks
EARTHblog

CSSD illustrates what is wrong with fracking debate

April 16, 2013 • Jennifer Krill

The formation of the Center for Sustainable Shale Development (CSSD) illustrates much that’s wrong with today’s fracking debate.

By attempting to address the need for stronger standards, the effort validates claims that existing state oversight of oil and gas extraction is inadequate to protect impacted communities.

But CSSD also validates local communities’ mistrust of fracking supporters by excluding drilling-impacted communities from the CSSD formation and decision-making structure. The CSSD has publicly launched a plan to certify drilling, but has not publicly disclosed its verification process.

EARTHblog

Responsible mining?

August 10, 2009 • Alan Septoff

EARTHWORKS and eight other nongovernmental organizations sent a letter to the mining and jewelry industry trade association, the Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC), outlining serious concerns with the RJC's mining standards and process. Among the criticisms from the NGOs are the absence of key environmental and social criteria, such as community consent, no-go areas for biodiversity conservation, and protection of natural water bodies from tailings disposal.