Recycled materials so far provide 54% gold, 44% silver for Tokyo 2020 medals

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Medal Project has created a history with the arrival of precious metals from recycled materials. The Tokyo Organising…

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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Medal Project has created a history with the arrival of precious metals from recycled materials.

The Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (Tokyo 2020) as the Tokyo 2020 Medal Project have received the first consignment of gold, silver and bronze to make the Games medals. The first delivery since the commencement of the project, which offers the public an opportunity to play a role in the Games’ preparations and also drawing attention to the importance of sustainability at the same time, has also created a history for the Games.

Tokyo 2020 today (Wednesday) received all the recycled metal extracted from electronic devices collected up to June 2018. With this delivery, the target for bronze (2,700kg) has been already met. The 16.5kg of gold received in the first consignment amounts to 54.5% of the targeted volume, while 1,800kg of silver will contribute to 43.9% of the total requirement.

Tokyo 2020 estimates it will be able to source the remaining targeted amounts from the devices likely to be donated between July 2018 and the end of March 2019. This is based on the success of the project so far and the fact that collection rates have been increasing every month.

In April 2017, a nationwide collection of discarded and obsolete electronic devices-including smartphones, digital cameras, handheld games and laptops-was launched, with the aim of using the precious metals they contain in the production of the medals that will be awarded to athletes at the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020.

A key part of Tokyo 2020’s engagement and sustainability programmes, the project is being supported by NTT DOCOMO, the Japan Environmental Sanitation Center, Japan’s Ministry of the Environment and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government.

As of September 2018, the number of facilities acting as collection centres had increased more than fourfold, with Marketing Partners and other organisations hosting more than 11,000 facilities and events, and more than 1,500 municipal authorities taking part. Many national and international athletes and members of the public across Japan have also been supporting the project by collecting and donating devices.

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Tokyo 2020 partners have also lent support by promoting the Medal Project and the need for more sustainable lifestyles. NTT DOCOMO, for example, ran classes at elementary schools in Tokyo emphasising the importance of recycling and explaining how the donated phones are being recycled.

With the number of sports and events at the Tokyo 2020 Games now finalised, the Organising Committee has announced it aims to collect 30.3kg of gold, 4,100kg of silver and 2,700kg of bronze – enough to produce all the Olympic and Paralympic medals that will be awarded at the Games.

The designs for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic medals will be revealed in 2019.

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