With Google’s expansion into consumer devices, its supply chain expanded from more than just data centers to hardware. With over 500 suppliers, Google this week published its 2018 Responsible Supply Chain report to detail working conditions and initiatives from employee wellness to the environment. To accompany the document, Google also produced VR videos that provide a tour into two specific aspects.

This is Google’s second annual report on a Responsible Supply Chain and focuses on developments throughout 2017. Data includes the rest of the Alphabet companies, though “Google is responsible for the majority of Alphabet’s supply chain impacts.”

Google’s current focus is on expanding its commitment to renewable energy in data centers and headquarters to the supply chain.

We’re strengthening our commitment to our supply chain by setting a goal to help our suppliers transition to clean, renewable energy. We’ll accomplish this by sharing what we’ve learned in matching 100% of our electricity consumption with renewable energy purchases for our own operations and by developing tools and support to help suppliers makethis transition. We will continue to work to develop markets to create access to affordable renewable energy in the communities where we source and produce our products.

Google 2018 Responsible Supply Chain report

In addition to sharing what it has learned on this front with manufacturing partners, Google is working on making renewable sources more widely available in various markets where suppliers operate.

Meanwhile, the company is using virtual reality and its JUMP rigs to see the supply chain “in action.” The latest videos look at factories in China and a mine in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

In our Made by Me VR experience, we bring you to the factory of our supplier Flex in Zhuhai, China, where you can walk in a worker’s shoes for a day.

Filmed using Jump cameras, the VR film offers a glimpse into the lives and conditions of those working at a low-tech, small-scale gold mine in Nyamurhale—one of just three conflict-free artisanal gold mines in the DRC.

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Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: abner@9to5g.com