Feb 20, 2010

Olympic Medals Include Recyclable Waste :o)

When Olympic champions are crowned at this year's winter games in Vancouver, these elite athletes will be taking home more than just gold, silver or bronze medals—they will be playing a role in Canada's efforts to reduce electronic waste. That's because each medal was made with a tiny bit of the more than 140,000 tons of e-waste that otherwise would have been sent to Canadian landfills.

The more than 1,000 medals to be awarded at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, amount to 2.05 kilograms of gold, 1,950 kilograms of silver (Olympic gold medals are about 92.5 per cent silver, plated with six grams of gold) and 903 kilograms of copper. A little more than 1.5 percent of each gold medal was made with metals harvested from cathode ray tube glass, computer parts, circuit boards and other trashed tech.

This is the first time that recycled materials have been added to Olympic medals, which historically have been made from mined mineral deposits refined for commercial use. Each Olympic medal is 100 millimeters in diameter, about six millimeters thick and weighs between 500 and 576 grams, depending upon the medal.


  1. We could learn a lot, about a lot of things, from Canada.

  2. I was already impressed with their opening ceremonies. But this is really, really cool.

  3. Thank you for the info. I was unaware that recycled materials were added to the Olympic medals. I always learn something new from you and appreciate it.

    Hugs, Rose

  4. I loved hearing this Ken. Now, if we can just stop moving them around, we could stop all the waste from moving it from place to place. Probably a little much to ask for.

  5. This is an interesting topic. I have no idea that they use recycle medals. See, we all learn something new. Take care and enjoy your Sunday. Nancy

  6. Happy to learn this. What a great thing to do. Let's hear it for Canada. Enjoying the Olympics, too.

  7. Hi there Ken,
    Thank-you for that information. I had just learned about the very limited amount of gold in our medals.
    We are now in YUMA AZ and have been trying to catch a few of the events. Our connection to the Canadian network is not working so we have had reporting from the USA networks. I must say they have been very good.
    Well dear friend the old girl is still having some struggles with being away from home BUT sure enjoying the warmth of the sunshine. Just got home now from the pool and hot tub.


    ALBERTA Lori (coming to you from Yuma right now and will be in Tucson for March and April

  8. This is something I really did not know, being Canadian I am glad Canada utilized recycled materials in a way that is memorable.


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