Tokyo 2020: Winning Gold for Sustainability

July 13th, 2021

80,000 tonnes of metal from small household appliances create the 5,000 gold, silver and bronze medals..

Did you know that the Olympic medals for Tokyo 2020 are made from recycled electronic goods like your smartphone? The event organisers collected about 80,000 tonnes of metal from small household appliances, such as used mobile phones, to create the 5,000 gold, silver and bronze medals.

ERP Ireland recently announced results of its ‘Recycling Habits during Covid-19’ study conducted by Coyne Research, which highlights recycling behaviours during the pandemic, identifying items recycled, items repaired, as well as items kept unused in the family home.  Just under half of respondents said they do not recycle unused electrical items as they feel they may use them again in the future with many of these items left unused sitting in drawers, the attic or the garden shed.

In Ireland, the overall collection rate of WEEE exceeds the EU targets. However, the return rate of smaller appliances such as mobile phones, tablets, and ereaders continues to be a challenge. This also limits the possibility for repair and refurbishment of these items which is a lost opportunity. Don’t hoard your devices, repair, reuse or recycle them free of charge at your local electrical retailer or civic amenity site #circulareconomy

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