Tokyo 2020 Olympic medals to be made from recycled electronic waste

Olympic organizers said they expect to collect enough obsolete electronic devices to manufacture all Olympic and Paralympic medals

Modal Trigger Olympic organizers said they expect to collect enough obsolete electronic devices to manufacture all Olympic and Paralympic medals. AP

The 2020 Olympic medals are going to be made from old mobile phones and other electronic devices.

The last time Tokyo hosted the Olympics was in 1964.

This means that all of the 2020 Olympic medals will potentially have iPhone and Android parts in them.

The committee launched its appeal for unwanted smartphones, cameras, laptops, handheld games consoles and other electronics in April 2017, which was met with "huge levels of support from the public and companies across Japan and from national and worldwide athletes", it claimed.

The recycled metal has been collected from the Japanese public as well as businesses and industry.

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By October 2018, 28.4kg of gold - 93.7 per cent of the targeted 30.3kg - and 3,500kg of silver - 85.4 per cent of the targeted 4,100kg - had been sourced from the donated devices.

Thanks to "huge levels of support", the committee said in a statement on Friday that they expected to reach the quotas by the end of March.

The designs for the Tokyo 2020 medals will be unveiled later this year.

By November past year, 47,488 tonnes of discarded devices had been collected, with the public handing in another five million used phones to a local network provider.

Overall, the target was to extract 67 pounds of gold, more than 9,000 pounds of silver, and close to 6,000 pounds of bronze to exclusively manufacture every single medal needed for both the Olympic and Paralympic Games of 2020 from recycled materials. "The elite athletes are being looked after by a different set of professional people so that there is no bureaucracy", Rathore, an olympic silver-medallist in double-trap shooting, said.

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