The Origins of Technology Materials Gain Importance

In her recent article from SIGNAL Magazine, published by the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association (AFCEA,, Rita Boland looks at the mandates that will affect electronics manufacturers and how they track certain supplies following legislation aimed at reducing violence in Africa.  These so-called “conflict minerals” are defined in Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act in 2010.

Section 1502 of the law amends Section 13 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, mandating that persons who require columbite-tantalite (coltan), cassiterite, gold, wolframite or their derivatives to build their products report annually regarding where they obtained the materials. Derivatives include metals such as tantalum, tin and tungsten, all common in the electronics industry—the business sector that may be most affected by any regulations.

Organizations that use electronics in their products—including the avionics and automotive industries as well as government developers—also will be affected. In the law, the definition of conflict minerals further extends to those determined by the secretary of state to finance conflict in the Congo or an adjoining country.

Rita was kind enough to include several quotes from yours truly in her article, along with colleague Michael Bierkandt of iPoint Systems.  You may read the full article here.  Thanks again to Rita for her generous use of our interview quotes.


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Filed under Compliance, Operations, Procurement, Risk Management, Supply Chain Management, Sustainability, Technology

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