Olympics: Japan eyes recycled medals for 2020 Tokyo Olympics

Japan's proposed national stadium design for the upcoming 2016 Olympic Games.
Japan's proposed national stadium design for the upcoming 2016 Olympic Games.PHOTO: REUTERS

(AFP) - Tokyo 2020 organisers on Thursday advocated making their Olympic medals out of recycled metals in an effort to give an environmentally "sustainable" hue to the Games.

Members of a task force in charge of drawing up a "legacy plan" for the event are advocating that the gold, silver and bronze medals be made from recycled metals, task force chairman Hiroshi Komiyama told reporters.

Mr Komiyama said that discarded products such as mobile phones, personal computers and others containing precious metals could be used to produce the medals.

The idea will be submitted to a board meeting of the Tokyo Organising Committee later this month for formal approval, he said.

Behind the proposal is a recognition that the second summer Olympics for Tokyo, more than half a century after its first Games in 1964, needs to inspire the public with a nobel idea, he said.

The 19-member task force also discussed whether Japan's new national stadium will be made from recycled steel, aluminium, glass and wood, Mr Komiyama said.

The country's preparations for the global games suffered a humiliating setback last year when the government pulled the plug on the original design of the new national stadium following spiralling costs and complaints over the design.

Last month, Japan chose a new design by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma.