Tesla

Elon Musk Will Personally Review the Audit of Tesla's Battery Material Suppliers

Elon Musk Will Personally Review the Audit of Tesla's Battery Material Suppliers

Image: Tesla

Elon Musk will personally review the audit of Tesla's battery material suppliers. The company puts a huge amount of effort into controlling its supply chain.

During Tesla's annual shareholder meeting, the issue of child labor and forced labor in mines for minerals for the production of batteries, namely cobalt, was raised. Several organizations have asked the company's shareholders to vote for a third-party audit of the company's suppliers. Although the shareholders rejected the proposal, Elon Musk took on some obligations.

The issue of child and forced labor is critical, which is why Musk said Tesla will still conduct a third-party audit of its suppliers. He said the company is ready to install a webcam at the mine so people can make sure that prohibited labor is not used there.

“I heard a question raised about cobalt mining. And you know what, we will conduct a third-party audit. In fact, we'll put a webcam on the mine. If anyone sees any children, please let us know,” Musk said.

Even though the commitment had already been made by the company, Musk stepped up his personal commitment to Tesla's customers and shareholders. On Thursday, he tweeted that he “will review the audit personally.” Musk said he would do this so that any owner of a Tesla car would feel confident they are driving a car made without the use of human rights-infringing labor.


Cobalt mining is one of the most contentious issues facing electric vehicle manufacturers. Tesla has been working on eliminating its use for many years and has been successful in doing so. The company uses batteries based on iron and nickel. Cobalt is used in a minimal amount as a binder.

“I don’t want to go too off tangent on that front, but it’s important to appreciate that most of our battery packs are iron-based. Majority of our battery packs are iron-based. Our other battery packs are nickel-based, not cobalt. The nickel batteries use a little bit of cobalt as a binder, but only a tiny amount,” Musk said.

“In contrast, your phones all use 100% cobalt. I recommend complaining to phone manufacturers. But even for the small amount of cobalt that we do use, we'll make sure six weeks to Sunday that no child labor is being exploited. Obviously, we're a company that cares a lot about doing the right thing, and we don't want to delude ourselves or delude anyone else,” Musk said.

© 2023, Eva Fox | Tesmanian. All rights reserved.

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Article edited by @SmokeyShorts; follow him on Twitter

About the Author

Eva Fox

Eva Fox

Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.

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