eco-chic fashion queens! Green jewelers claiming “responsibly mined”
may be misleading you. According to the
US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), hard rock mining,
which includes, although is not limited, to the mining of gold,
releases almost half of all toxic pollution in the US, with a clean-up
cost in the tens of billions of dollars.
people do not discard gold and precious metals and have old jewelry sitting idle
in their homes. Individuals have trouble getting value for their old jewelry so
it sits in bank vaults and in the form of old and unwanted jewelry while mining
continues at a pace of 2,500 tons a year, 80% of which is used by the jewelry
industry. In fact, we estimate that there is enough gold above ground (already
mined) to satisfy all demands of the jewelry industry for the next 50 years.
participating in a recycled gold registry, you are driving a fundamental change
in the supply chain of the jewelry industry and getting closer to the goal of
ending destructive mining activity on the planet.
Tips for finding truly eco-chic jewelry:
#1 - Percent of
Ask your eco jeweler to provide full
disclosure of the recycled content in your ring including the setting, alloys,
findings and refinery process. Too often, we hear that recycled gold was
promised and the actual content was only a tiny percent of the setting with no
mention of whether the gold is post consumer.
#2 – What does
conflict free really mean?
Don’t be misled by the popular term
which today is largely considered an indicator of a safe diamond purchase. While
it does mean that war and terrorism are not being funded with mining proceeds,
the term is often applied to stones that come from countries in peacetime. It’s
sort like putting a “cholesterol free” label on broccoli.
#3 – Think of
those who work the mines
The other perceived safe label is
“Canadian Diamonds”. While the Canadian jewelry industry has done a great job
of promoting themselves the truth is that all mining is bad for the planet and
leaves a gaping scar on earth. Plus, the indigenous people whose land is mined
receive little compared to what the mining giants make on diamond sales.
We hope this insight helps you to
make truly green choices for your fine jewelry. The story is occasionally
covered but widely unknown.
Below are three links that discuss
the green jewelry issues:
No Such Thing As An Environmentally
Gold Doesn’t Glitter
York Times, Questions on the Cost of
to Green Girls by Lisa W. for
greenKarat is the
eco-jeweler that opposes all mining and offers full disclosure of recycled metal
content. gK is devoted to recycling precious metals in order to preserve the
ecosystem and eliminate exploitation of miners. Visit our web site for a free
ring sizer tool and to sign up for the myKarat® recycled gold registry