By: Mike Hammer
It’s like the winning lottery ticket that got lost. We like to talk about gold as a permanent asset, like it never goes away. We usually think gold is mined out of the ground (or sifted from a river or ocean), then made into bars, coins, or jewelry, then stays that way forever. At the very least, jewelry is sold to a pawn shop, melted down, and used to make more jewelry. Today’s gold news reminds us that the real world isn’t so simple.
Gold is used in electronics whenever a circuit designer needs a completely non-corrosive conductor, usually in fine wires or protective casings for electronic parts. And while many cities and states require recycling of electronics, a lot of gold still gets simply thrown out with the trash.
A staggering 15 million ounces worldwide, according to the latest estimate. Or, if you prefer thinking in money, $22 billion worth of gold went into trash dumps in 2017. Almost makes one wonder why they don’t mine trash dumps.
The study was sponsored by the UN University, so should be fairly reliable. You can read more about it in today’s featured article, then sound off in the Comments below.
Related: US is Losing Gold Again This Year