I do have some hopefully helpful to offer those of you
wishing to make more socially and environmentally responsible
jewelry. First of all it can be done! Just check out GreenKarat.com.
They make some of the most beautiful jewelry I've ever seen, and it's
ecologically and socially responsible too!
I can't help you out on where to get recycled gold (I currently work
in silver) other than this: Art Clay. Art clay is made from recycled
metals in Japan by Aida Chemical Industries, a "green" company. You
probably have heard of Art Clay Silver, but they have gold clay, too.
For more info on Aida Chemical Industries and the manufacturing of
Art Clay, visit:
http://www.artclayworld.com/makes.html PMC is the other manufacturer
of precious metal clay. I recommend Art Clay over PMC because in the
research I've done, I haven't found anything about the recycled
metal content of PMC or efforts by PMC to minimize environmental
impact. If you're not at all familiar with precious metal clay,
visit: ArtClayWorld.com. You'll soon be hooked on this fun, easy,
versitile, new medium.
Also try to be socially consicious elsewhere in your jewelry making
as well as your gold. Try and buy used tools and tools not make in
countries like and where they are produced in
sweatshops. Try and minimized the amount of electricity you used in
producing pieces. Use the cleanest burning feul availible to you. Use
citric acid (available from most bakery supply stores because it's a
natural product used in foods) for pickled. About 1 cup citric acid
to every 3 quarts water. You have to change your pickle more often,
but it's cheaper and non-toxic. Here's a good article I found on
pollution reduction in jewelry manufacturing:
Jewelry Manufacturing Pollution Prevention Recommendations
Think about the effect you have on the world in everything you do as
well. Recycle, Compost, Don't drive, Bike, Take the Bus, Buy Sweat
Shop Free Clothes, Use Biodegradable Cleaners, Eat Locally Grown
Food. Those are some of the bigger ones. I don't have time to go into
all the practical things you can do in your daily life for the
environment, but if you want to know more I suggest reading The
'Consumer's Guide to Effective Environmental Choices', an excellent
book from the Union of Concerned Scientists.
As Ghandi said, "Be the change you wish to see in the world."
Care2 make the world greener!