For the last 18 years, our pennies have been made with copper plated steel.
There is hardly any part of life today where electrical and electronic equipment is not used. It is difficult to imagine a life without mobile phones, computers, video games, digital cameras, DVD players and flat screen TVs. Think of all the other electrical goods in your house.
A mobile phone contains about 16 grams of copper . In 2006, more than one billion mobile phones were sold; the equivalent of 16,000 tonnes of copper .
A computer contains about 0.7 kg of copper . In 2006, 240 million computers sold worldwide, which represents a total weight of 168,000 tonnes of copper .
Over the past few years electrical goods have become cheaper, rapid technological improvements have occurred and fashions have and will continue to change. How many people do you know with a mobile phone more than three years old? All these products need copper. Copper is a metal we take so easily for granted – yet is essential to our 21st century way of life.
Why am I telling you this today? To remind you of those thirty three men trapped in a copper mine in Chile. What unbelievable joy when they were discovered to be safe, and uninjured – but how hard to realise it may be 4 months before a large escape shaft can be drilled to enable them to be lifted to the surface.
A news report earlier this week, when the camera first went down the narrow bore hole included this quote from one of the men
"This is where we entertain ourselves, where we have a meeting every day, where we make plans. This is where we pray."
They knew that even in the depths of the earth, [even before they had a telephone link to those above ground] they could call on the Lord – and He heard their prayers. And they continue to pray.
Let us not forget to pray for them, their families, and all those working to bring them home.