Environmental sustainability forms the core of the Olympic and Paralympic Games to be held in August in Rio de Janeiro. The event's organization chose products with a focus on sustainability as shown by the award podiums and medals revealed Tuesday (Jun. 14) by the Rio 2016 Committee.
Mário Andrada, executive director of communications at Rio 2016, said the atmosphere of the award podiums will combine three elements—traditional, popular and modern. Another innovation is that the medal winners will also receive a wooden sculpture of the Rio 2016 logo. Paralympic winner athletes will receive an exclusive version of Tom mascot, with gold, silver and bronze hair colors. In total, 15,000 athletes will attend both events—10,900 in the Olympics and 4,350 in Paralympics.
Rio 2016 medals will be produced by the Brazilian Mint, administratively subordinated to the Ministry of Finance and the official supplier of the Games. According to Lara Amorelli, interim president of the organization, the design of the medals is special. The organization's employees engaged in producing unique pieces that reflect the Brazilian diversity and focus on sustainability. "The silver and bronze medals have been produced using more than 30 percent recycled materials and gold extracted without the use of mercury," said Lara.
Similarly, the rounded cases that hold the medals were made from certified wood, extracted from a sustainable environmental management and socially responsible area. Lara Amorelli also revealed that the Paralympic medals feature a special innovation: a tiny device inside which makes a noise when the medal is shaken, "so that athletes may have a sensory experience."
The device makes a unique sound and allows visually impaired athletes to know if their medals are gold, silver or bronze. According to her, the measure expresses their concern for accessibility and is intended to help impaired athletes to identify their medal's hue. Paralympic medals will have "Rio 2016" written in Braille (tactile writing system used by blind people).
In total, the Mint produced 5,130 medals, from which 2,488 for the Olympics and 2,642 for the Paralympics.
Tania Braga, sustainability general manager of Rio 2016 Committee, said that for the first time, silver and bronze medals were made using more than 30 percent recycled metal. "It was an innovation. In addition, the gold was completely extracted without the use of mercury, which is an environmental issue related to the health of miners. It was a very innovative step."
For Carlos Arthur Nuzman, Brazil's Olympic Committee President, Rio 2016 medals are among the most beautiful of all games. Nuzman expects Brazil's team to deliver their best performance in the Olympic Games. "We intend to be among 'top ten' [teams]."
Brazil's Sports Minister Leonardo Picciani said it is an honor for the country to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games, because sports set an example to overcome obstacles, when athletes are competing for medals, but also by fostering humanity's core values of peace, freedom, of a better world, coined by the official slogan: "A New World". The ceremony that unveiled the medals was attended by International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach.
Translated by Amarílis Anchieta
Fonte: Agência Brasil.