Engineering consultant DMT GmbH has launched a global certification scheme covering environmental, social and economic impact standards through the raw materials value chain.

According to the company, around 40 different certification schemes exist for mining activity alone, with some certificates specific to a single geography, process or humanitarian concern, and others to a single mineral. This can result in a ‘porous and diffuse approach to how sustainability and ethics are defined from country to country, mineral to mineral, and company to company’, DMT said.

The CERA certification program involves the development of a new universal standard for the evaluation of environmental, social and economic sustainability along the raw materials value chain. It will be applicable at every stage of the value chain from mineral exploration to the final product, covering every raw material, across every country, under a single scheme, according to the company.

CERA uses blockchain technology to enable the traceability of raw materials along the entire value chain and create a proprietary hybrid database where CERA certification can be viewed and verified.

The program’s advisory board includes Volkswagen, Fairphone, Euromines, University of Southern Denmark, United Nations ECE and the EU Joint Research Centre (JRC), while the project team includes Leiden University in Netherlands, University of Leoben in Austria, Luleå University of Technology, Research Institutes of Sweden, TU¨V NORD CERT GmbH and DMT. 

This story uses material from DMT, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier.