Why does DBCo not exclusively source recycled gold?

Currently, not enough recycled gold is available on the market to be the sole source of gold for DBCo. Umicore, exclusive supplier of the gold bullions securitising Xetra-Gold (deliverable on request), has high quality standards for the provided gold – whether or not it is sourced through recycling . In addition to the LBMA Good Delivery quality seal, Umicore is certified by the Responsible Jewellery Council. The aim is to minimise the ecological footprint, regardless of the gold production method. Certification is only granted if a gold bar producer meets certain uniform standards across the entire production chain. This applies not only with regard to climate compatibility, but also in terms of a corporate policy meeting ethical, social and human rights standards.  

An exclusive offering of recycled gold is also precluded by the fact that many of the bullions in circulation and storage are already over 100 years old (see glossary grandfathered gold ). Their destruction or swapping would cause more emissions than the current approach.  

Who are the cooperation partners of DBCo in sustainability matters?

  • LBMA
  • Umicore AG & Co. KG

Are there standards to ensure human rights are respected throughout the process?

In 2012, the LBMA introduced the Responsible Sourcing Programme for gold, setting common standards for the entire supply chain in the international wholesale of precious metals. It is based on the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals and focuses on human rights, conflict and governance. The standard guarantees prevention of human rights violations in the extraction, transport and trade of gold.

What are important certifications for DBCo?

The standards for responsible sourcing have grown increasingly strict over the past years. ESG assessments were implemented for the first time in 2019. The LBMA’s delivery system sets firmly defined standards in terms of precious metal quality, ethical trading and responsible sourcing. Investors in LBMA Good Delivery bullions may rest assured that the required standards have been met. It is the expressed aim of the LBMA to continuously expand the standards and make adaptions to current requirements. 

What exactly makes gold sustainable and is there even such a thing?

Gold, in itself, is sustainable: it does not corrode, is not used up and thus lasts practically forever, as the discovery of gold jewellery more than 6,000 years old impressively proves. The most sustainable gold extraction to date is conducted through green mining. To optimise the carbon footprint, green mining should always be based on gold recycling, as CO2 emissions from scrap gold recovery amount to less than one-twentieth of the CO2 emissions generated by traditional mining of the same amount of gold.

What are the measures to prevent child and forced labour in gold mining?

To ensure that no gold mined through child or forced labour ends up in the vaults of DBCo, its partner company Umicore has been certified by the Responsible Jewellery Council and only such gold bullions are purchased which meet the LBMA Good Delivery standards. A pioneering project carried out jointly by the LBMA and the World Gold Council uses blockchain technology to ensure seamless end-to-end tracking of the performance and supply chain of every single gold bar to prevent gold produced by child or forced labour from entering global gold trade, e.g. from crisis regions

What measures are taken to offset the CO2 emissions caused by the gold transport?

The gold stored to back Xetra-Gold bearer bonds is usually purchased in collective orders of at least 500 kg and brought to Frankfurt via commercial aircraft carrying freight and passengers. The resulting ecological footprint is offset with CO2 certificates. The same applies to the gold delivered to holders of Xetra-Gold bonds upon request. Whenever possible, the delivered bars are from recycled stock. (See also Why does DBCo not exclusively source recycled gold?)


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