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Olympics: Recycling drive meets target for Tokyo 2020 bronze medals

  • October 23, 2018
  • , Kyodo News , 07:09 p.m.
  • English Press

TOKYO – The organizing committee of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics announced Tuesday it has collected enough recycled materials to make bronze medals for the Games, while components to forge gold and silver medals are still lacking.


Aiming to make all the Tokyo 2020 medals from recycled precious metals, the organizing committee said it has collected its target of 2,700 kilos of copper as a result of a recycling drive initiated last year.


Meanwhile, only 16.5 kilograms of gold and 1,800 kilograms of silver — 54.5 and 43.9 percent, respectively, of the needed metals — have been collected, amid a current gold shortage.


Approximately 5,000 medals to be awarded at the Games will be forged from metals recovered from used smartphones, digital cameras, computers and other small electronic devices handed in by consumers nationwide.


Collection boxes have been installed at mobile phone carrier outlets, post offices, schools and municipal government buildings across Japan toward Tokyo 2020’s goal of “zero wasting.”


“Treasuring belongings seems like a very Japanese trait. This will send a strong message of sustainability to the world,” said Toshiro Muto, the organizing committee’s CEO.


The recycling drive is scheduled to end next spring, with production of the medals expected to start from the beginning of next year.

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