How lab-grown diamonds are disrupting the diamond mining industry for the better
How do lab-grown diamonds compare in their environmental impact with conventionally mined ones? Given that some people rely on mining diamonds for their livelihoods, why do we still need to transition away from extracting these precious stones by way of mining?
Sharing his wisdom here is Alex Weindling, Founder and CEO of Clean Origin, a jewelry company which sells lab-grown diamonds. You'll hear about some of the major social and environmental issues involved in conventional diamond mining, how lab-grown diamonds are made, why this technology should render the need for mining diamonds obsolete, and more. Let's dive in!
[2:10] What first inspired Alex's passion for nature.
[2:44] Alex: "Our time here is 90 years if all goes well and 9 milliseconds if it doesn't. But this is the gift, right? This is it. This is earth and it's very, very, very beautiful."
[3:28] Alex's path into the world of lab-grown diamonds.
[5:04] Alex talks about what eventually led him to leave his family business in the conventional diamond industry.
[5:40] The lightbulb moment Alex had that led him back to the diamond industry after learning about lab-grown diamonds.
[7:12] Alex: "Why would you continue the slaughter of the earth when we've found a way to get what we want with none of that?"
[9:16] Alex explains how lab-grown diamonds are less expensive but indistinguishable from mined diamonds.
[10:02] Alex: "Not only can we get them without ripping craters in the earth that are literally visible from the atmosphere, but we can make them more accessible to more people."
[10:48] Kaméa: "What was your biggest challenge in trying to get your message out there?"
[13:11] Alex walks us through the different processes involved in traditional diamond mining.
[15:39] Kaméa: "Do you think there is such a thing as sustainable mining?"
[16:23] Alex: "The problem with mining is, we just don't know. We don't know if it went through dirty hands."
[18:03] Why the diamond mining today is becoming less and less efficient, using more resources for less yield of diamonds.
[19:52] How lab-grown diamonds are created.
[23:55] Kaméa: "How do you think this increasing availability of lab-grown diamonds will impact the current social and environmental safety standards of diamond mines?"
[24:33] How transitioning away from mining diamonds will impact those whose livelihoods depend on it.
[25:32] Kaméa: "Is there anything we can do as individuals to support this transition?"
[28:49] Alex discusses how to give diamonds new life at the end of their use.
About our Guest
Alex Weindling is the Founder and CEO of Clean Origin, a jewelry company making conflict-free and environmentally friendly lab-grown diamonds. He has previously served as President of five jewelry companies, and after discovering lab-created diamonds, he knew instantly that this was the smarter, more ethical choice for consumers. Ever since, he's decided to commit himself to sharing this with the world.
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Inspiration: Eco Warrior Princess
Note to self: "I have so much love in my life."
Health practice: "I've been doing yoga since the early 90s, so I have a very committed yoga practice."
Sustainability practice: Alex composts and grows vegetables in his own garden.
Element of hope: "The millennial generation."
Closing words: "Never stop dreaming, and never stop telling the truth. People will eventually listen."
Arbor Teas is a small, family owned business based in Ann Arbor, Michigan with a big focus on sustainability. The company only sources loose leaf and organic certified teas, packages all its teas in backyard compostable materials, uses solar power in its operations, and offsets all of their emissions with CarbonFund.