2010 Olympics Will Use Recycle E-Waste for Medals

The 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver will feature an Olympic medal first. Not only will every single medal handed out at the Olympics be different, but they also will be made of recycled electronic waste or e-waste. The 2010 Winter Olympics will be one of the first to take on a sustainability and conservation initiatives philosophy and correlate it with the games. In part of doing this Vancouver’s metal industry leader, Teck Resources is manufacturing all of the Olympic medals out of recycled metals recovered from old electronics. This is a great for our mother earth, as e-waste continues to be a growing concern for our environment.

Teck Resources is acquiring the metal materials from the smelting of various old electronics. Whether it be from cathode raytube glass, computer parts, or circuit boards each medal will be made up from electrical parts. The process involves the shredding, separating, and heating the electrical parts, then combining the byproducts with metals from other sources. As of now Teck resources is producing more than 1,000 medals for the 2010 games.

Olympic officials for the 2010 wanted to make sure their medals stood out. Not only are they made from e-wast, but they are also uniquely designed. The designs are suppose to represent the Canadian geography which produces different shapes then your traditional round medal. These medals are more squared shaped with rounded corners and a unique surface to represent the Vancouver landscape Also, the first of their kind, being made with e-waste these medals are the heaviest ever weighing in at 500 (1lb) to 576 grams (1lb 6 oz).

With e-waste becoming a more prevalent problem it is nice to see the 2010 Olympics addressing the issue. Even if the medals aren’t entirely made out of e-waste materials, it is still preventing such materials from polluting the environment. It is nice to see something as big as the Olympics focusing on the same issue as Recycling for Charities. It is important to address the e-waste problem and as Recycling for Charities aims to keep e-waste out of the environment it is nice to know what the recycled e-waste can be used for, especially Olympic medals.

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