A conflict diamond means one that has been mined at a place of armed conflict and is traded illicitly to fund the fighting. One that has not been through all these is a conflict-free diamond. Some also call it an ethical diamond. A GIA grading report does not ensure that it is conflict-free. If it is made in a laboratory, and comes with the certificate stating that it is lab-made, then that is proof enough. If it is no lab-made diamond, however, your only other way to know whether it is conflict-free would be to check either the source or the place where it came from.
Diamonds come from Canada’s arctic tundra region. The diamond supply of the nation was discovered in the last century, plus the government enforces extremely stringent environmental policies to make sure that diamonds are extracted with minimum impact on wildlife and the natural landscape. They negotiate mutually beneficial labor agreements with the indigenous people in the region. It is pretty much not possible to find higher standards in some other place in the world.
Botswana takes pride in its stringent labor and environmental regulations concerning the diamond trade. It is arguably the world leader when it comes to conflict-free diamonds.
Perhaps the most popular Botswana diamond is the one set in the engagement ring of Meghan Markle. Prince Harry had Meghan Markle’s ring custom-designed by a jeweler, with the center stone sourced from Botswana and tinier diamonds taken from the jewelry collection of Princess Diana. The Botswana diamond then became as popular as the smaller stones from his late mother’s collection.
Russia’s mining practices are admirable even today. Their diamond supply comes from Arkhangelsk and Siberia. The foundation of the economies, labor force and communities of these two regions are diamonds. Miners in Russia earn two times the average salary and get affordable housing, retirement and healthcare funds.
Like Russia and Canada, the Australian mining segment does wonders for the local economies in remotely located rural areas. Australian diamonds are stringently monitored right from the moment these stones emerge from their mining facilities, and efforts are being made to keep diamond mining practices sustainable in any situation where they are possible. In addition to all the other nations in this post, Australia is a signatory to KPCS (Kimberley Process Certification Scheme).