The Impact of Diamond Mining
The diamond formation process takes billions of years; it’s no wonder that, once uncovered, these brilliant gems are cherished and commemorate our most treasured moments. However, mining diamonds is a difficult process that wreaks havoc on ecosystems and societies.
The amount of earth that must be moved to find a diamond is astounding. Such methods require the use of energy, water, and petroleum in large quantities. Diamond miners clear large areas of important habitat for a variety of animals and vegetation, build new roads and infrastructure to house workers, unearth toxic materials, and pollute the air and local water sources, potentially altering ecosystems for decades or longer and contributing to global climate change.
Societies also incur severe damage due to diamond mining, as the exorbitant profits yielded by diamond mining cause corruption and wind up funding wars and supporting murder, rape, child labor, and other devastating violations of basic human rights. This is where the term “blood diamond” or “conflict diamond” comes from, as these diamonds support violence and other atrocities. To reform the diamond mining industry and lessen the associated carnage, in 2003, the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KP) was launched. The KP set new requirements for controlling diamond mining and trade, yet these requirements are difficult to enforce, and the KP has many loopholes, enabling the continuation of corruption within the diamond mining industry.
The failure of the KP has caused many companies to only sell diamonds from peaceful lands such as Canada, where regulations are stricter. However, these operations still devastate the environment and support the establishment of new mines in new habitats, with the number of diamonds mined increasing every day. Despite these companies marketing such diamonds as “conflict-free,” they still fail to provide diamonds that are ethical and sustainable.
Avilan™, the only provider of truly ethical, responsibly sourced diamonds, prevents the need for newly mined diamonds by selling gems from the existing world inventory, “up-cycling” diamonds from one owner to the next. This creates a diamond with a rich history, or a Storied Diamond™. Renewing these treasures decreases the need for traditionally mined diamonds, providing the option to enjoy the sparkle without the guilt while vastly improving the diamond industry.