Media Releases

This Valentine’s Day, over 80 jewelry retailers make a lasting commitment to clean up dirty metals

February 14, 2012 • Earthworks

Macy’s and Costco continue dodge responsibility, falling behind industry standard

WASHINGTON, DC: Over 80 jewelry retailers from around the world, including 8 of the top 10 US retailers, have committed to cleaning up dirty metals by signing the No Dirty Gold campaign’s “Golden Rules” for more responsible metals sourcing.  This is good news for consumers, the environment, and the communities who live with metals mining – the largest toxic polluter in the U.S.  Unfortunately, two companies, Macy’s and Costco, among the top 10 US jewelry retailers, lag behind and have yet to meaningfully commit to cleaning up their gold supply chain.

“Dirty gold must become a thing of the past,” said No Dirty Gold campaign director Payal Sampat.  She continued, “No one wants their Valentine’s Day jewelry tainted with human rights abuses or toxic pollution. But this can’t happen unless companies like Macy’s commit to cleaning up their supply chains and sign the Golden Rules. ”

EARTHblog

Dirty Gold Videos: customers start to send in video messages to Costco

October 31, 2011 • Nick Magel

Costco has tried to avoid any controversy when it comes to their gold products, but their customers won't let them. They refused to answer the over 1000 customer posts on their Facebook page. Then, when customers called the company directly, Costco failed to return a single call. Costco executives turned off their phones and sent customers directly to voicemails.

Costco is making two things clear: they do not feel accountable to their customers (many who make up the over 25,000 calling on Costco), and they are not moved by the thought of human rights abuses, environmental destruction, and unfair labor being associated with the gold they sell to you at their stores.

Media Releases

Turning Up the Heat on Costco: National Call-In Campaign to Reject Dirty Gold

September 2, 2011 • Earthworks

WASHINGTON, Sept. 1 -- In recent weeks, hundreds of Costco customers have flooded Costco's Facebook page to urge them to reject "dirty" or irresponsibly mined gold and to commit to switching to more ethically produced metals. The wholesale chain -- one of the nation's leading jewelry retailers-- has failed to respond, and environmental and human rights campaigners are turning up the heat.

This week, Earthworks' No Dirty Gold Campaign and change.org are urging Costco customers to call the company's headquarters in Issiquah, WA, to tell CEO James Sinegal it's time to sign the Golden Rules, principles for more responsible mining that respect human rights, adopt fair labor standards, and minimize harm to the environment. To date, more than 80 leading jewelry retailers including Sears/Kmart, Target, and Tiffany & Co. have signed on to the Golden Rules principles. Customers are asking why Costco is lagging behind other major retailers in ensuring that the gold it sells is not tainted with human rights abuses or pollution.

EARTHblog

Turning Up the Heat on Costco

September 1, 2011 • Nick Magel

Intag No Mina In recent weeks, hundreds of Costco customers have flooded Costco s Facebook page to urge them to reject dirty or irresponsibly mined gold and to commit to switching to more ethically produced metals. The wholesale chain one of the nation s leading jewelry retailers has failed to respond, and environmental and human rights campaigners are turning up the heat.

This week, Earthworks No Dirty Gold Campaign and change.org are urging Costco customers to call the company s headquarters in Issiquah, WA, to tell CEO James Sinegal it s time to sign the Golden Rules, principles for more responsible mining that respect human rights, adopt fair labor standards, and minimize harm to the environment. To date, more than 80 leading jewelry retailers including Sears/Kmart, Target, and Tiffany & Co. have signed on to the Golden Rules principles. Customers are asking why Costco is lagging behind other major retailers in ensuring that the gold it sells is not tainted with human rights abuses or pollution.

Right now, Costco cannot tell its customers whether the gold in their display cases is coming at the cost of safe working conditions or from mines with cyanide spills that are poisoning communities' drinking water, said Nick Magel, coordinator of the No Dirty Gold campaign. Costco customers deserve better, and communities near mine sites deserve better.

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EARTHblog

Take Action Today: Call Costco. It’s time for clean gold!

August 29, 2011 • Nick Magel

Intag No MinaWe know you care about human rights, fair labor, and environmental protection.

From Ghana, to Peru, to Romania, to Colombia gold is wreaking havoc on communities, and destroying ecosystems as a new mining blitz on this precious metal takes hold.

It's time for Costco, one of the nation's leading gold retailers, to step up and use their purchasing power to help transform the gold industry.

Right now they are not.

You've swamped Costco's Facebook, now it's time to swamp their phones! We need to make sure Costco not only hears our demands for clean gold practices, but also listens. By signing on to the No Dirty Gold Campaign's Golden Rules, Costco would show their commitment to clean gold.

Unfortunately, Costco is content with its current policies; they don't see a reason to sign on to the Golden Rules. But with your help, we can change their minds.

EARTHblog

No Dirty Gold activists hammer Costco s Facebook page

July 8, 2011 • Nick Magel

Costco

On May 16, Change.org, in support of EARTHWORKS No Dirty Gold Campaign, released a multipronged social media action against Costco. Change.org redeveloped an online petition calling for Costco to sign onto the Golden Rules principles that has since garnered over 27,000 signatures. Accompanying the morning s petition blitz was a creative bomb of Costco s Facebook page, where responsible gold mining activists changed their profile pictures in order to spell out No Dirty Gold on Costco s Facebook homepage.

Publications

Earthworks Journal — spring/summer 2011

July 7, 2011
EARTHblog

Costco’s customers flood Facebook to tell company NO to dirty gold.

July 6, 2011 • Nick Magel

[UPDATE with Press Release] Costco s Facebook page is flooded with messages from their customers asking Costo to sign on to the No Dirty Gold Campaign s Golden Rules . Here are a few from just the last hour:

"What does it cost in human health and conditions to save a few dollars on your gold jewelry? Think of the profits when you can proudly boast Fair Trade?? Walmart cheated-- Here's your edge." - Facebook user

"It is deplorable to support human rights violations. I will not shop for Jewelery at Costo until such time as it signs on to the No Dirty Gold Campaigns Golden Rules. I will not renew my membership unless Costco takes this action" - Facebook user

Costco, show me you care about human rights, ending child labor, and protecting the environment. Sign the Golden Rules! And then--here's where it gets tricky--FOLLOW THEM. (We'll find out if you don't.)" - Facebook user