Tokyo Olympic medals may be made from recycled smartphones

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Now that the curtain has closed on the Rio Summer Olympics, athletes will begin to set their sights on Tokyo 2020 where they may compete to earn … recycled consumer electronics.

That’s because organizers for the Tokyo Olympic games are considering a proposal to tap into Japan’s large "urban mine," which collects an annual 650,000 tons of discarded consumer electronics and small appliances each year, reports Nikkei Asian Review.

That would supply an adequate amount of gold, silver and copper (used for bronze medals) for the Olympic medals, but Japan must enhance and broaden its collection methods. Only a fraction of the amount discarded each year gets collected and already much of that is reused to make more electronics.

"In order for all Japanese people to participate in the Tokyo Olympics, we are asking companies to propose a concrete collection proposal and would like to work with the Olympic organizing committee to realize the proposal," said Yuko Sakita, a representative of Genki Net for Creating a Sustainable Society.

If all else fails, hand out microprocessors.

Close up of CCD Webcam Tecnology.