Jewellery is an industry that has not stopped growing, as has the value of materials and final products. You have to look at this article on the five most expensive jewels in the world to realize the exorbitant figures they can reach. But nowadays, it is not enough to create beautiful and lucrative pieces; you also have to consider their impact on the environment, which is where sustainable jewellery comes in.
Every day there are more alternatives for creating sustainable jewellery, and more companies are beginning to implement changes in their business models, with more sustainable policies and more ethical and environmentally friendly practices.
Impact of jewellery on the environment
The lack of traceability of materials, the different processes that generate significant emissions (extraction of mercury, lead, arsenic or cyanide), the use of heavy machinery and the large production of waste are responsible for jewellery being considered one of the most polluting sectors.
But the jewellery making itself is not the problem. This lies in extracting the raw material necessary to create the different pieces: gold, silver or different precious stones. Check out more at Hulm Dubai.
It is precisely the social impact caused by the exploitation of workers in the mines of developing countries, together with the effects of jewellery on the environment, the two significant challenges that this industry must face. And this is partly thanks to the demands of consumers. They are increasingly aware of their actions and know this business model is unsustainable, opting for more ethical alternatives.
To give us an idea: traditionally, extracting a single gram of gold is necessary to consume 2,500 litres of water. As for the kilos of CO2 emitted into the atmosphere, the figure is 20. Around 2.5 tons of waste are also generated. Now think how far those numbers can go if extrapolated to the extraction needed to meet current industry demand.
Sustainable jewellery, the most ethical alternative
Luxury is something that is not at odds with sustainability. In fact, for many, this is considered an added value. Knowing that the ring you bought for yourself or to give away is sustainable is a plus. Primarily if it has been obtained in an environmentally friendly way, without the use of chemical products during its extraction. Of course, it also adds that deforestation and workers’ labour rights are not promoted.
And you will ask yourself, how do I know if what I am buying is sustainable jewellery? Well, several characteristics must be met to be named like this:
One of the main aspects sustainable jewellery fights for is transparency in the traceability of the entire process. Ethical practices and policies must be guaranteed, from the raw material extraction to the sale of the piece.
Reuse of materials
It is committed to giving a second life to all the materials already extracted, both by reusing them and transforming them into new ones, thanks to the foundry.
Quality and durability
It seeks to create timeless pieces, thus promoting a more conscious and responsible consumption. In addition, unnecessary investment in new jewellery from time to time is also avoided.
Crafts versus industrialization
It fights to avoid the mass creation of pieces, betting on a more sustainable model based on the most artisanal design. In this case, the result of components is on demand or in small collections, also giving value to the work of the artisan jeweller.
You already know what you should remember the next time you buy a jewel. As is our chance, you can always go to businesses committed to ethical trade and wise consumption. All our jewellery is sustainable at Cash Converters, as we believe all items can have a second life. Visit your nearest store or look at the web to discover our extensive catalogue of second-hand rings, bracelets, earrings, watches and necklaces.