Are Canadian Diamonds Conflict-Free?

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Are Canadian Diamonds Conflict-Free?

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Are Canadian Diamonds conflict-free?
Tuesday, June 15, 2010 - 4:06pm

CAMPAIGN: Making Sustainable Jewlery Mainstream

CONTENT: Press Release


Why Sustainable? | Industry Facts

Canadian Diamonds: Diamonds that are labeled as Canadian diamonds are guaranteed to be conflict-free in that they originate in a country of peace where there is no armed conflict. Most diamonds mined in Canada are shipped to India and Africa for cutting and polishing. Only those with the added certification of being from the Northwest Territories are cut and polished in-country. Of the five diamond mines in Canada, only 1 is majority owned by a Canadian company.  

Conflict-free: Conflict diamonds, also known as 'blood' diamonds, are rough diamonds traded by rebel movements or their allies for the financing of armed conflicts historically aimed at undermining legitimate governments. Currently, there are 48 participants in the voluntary Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS), which was established to regulate the trade of conflict diamonds and prevent conflict diamonds from entering the legal diamond market. Companies wanting to export rough diamonds from a country participating in the Process must provide a KPCS certificate to customs.
Unfortunately, the Kimberley Process does not ensure the source of rough diamonds or take into consideration the labor conditions under which the diamond has been mined, cut or polished. Moreover, KPCS is only applicable to diamonds, and does not consider the environmental impact of diamond mining. Therefore, conflict-free is a small step the industry has made toward greater responsibility and, given the narrow definition and the challenge of regulating the KP certification, consumers seeking sustainable jewelry will want to consider a myriad of other factors.  

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