TrendWatching is a purpose-driven trend firm, inspiring business professionals to launch sustainable innovations that benefit people and planet.
Select your country
While the amount of global electronic waste is surging, less than 20% is currently recycled. Soon, The Royal Mint in the UK will be pitching in by extracting gold from discarded laptops and mobile phones.
Using a chemical process developed by Calgary-based Excir, it will be able to recover over 99% of the precious metals found in circuit boards. When its new plant in South Wales is fully operational in 2023, The Royal Mint expects to process up to 90 metric tons of circuit boards every week, all sourced from the UK and providing hundreds of kilograms of gold per year.
The plant will support around 40 jobs — The Royal Mint is reskilling existing employees and hiring new chemists and engineers.
Join 100,000+ future-focused professionals in 180 countries already receiving our free trend updates.