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US Mint launches dollar coins

US Mint launches dollar coins


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The U.S. Mint has launched a new push for dollar coins hoping their promotion campaign will help the American public embrace the currency. The coin instead of the bill is part of an effort to protect the environment and save the government money.

Greg Hernandez with the U.S. Mint said, "A dollar coin lasts 30 to 40 years." That's compared to paper bills that wear out after only a couple of years. And there's another advantage with coins: they are recyclable. Hernandez said, "So when their service life is finished, we just melt ‘em down and turn them back into new coins." That, he said, saves the nation billions of dollars.

So the U.S. Mint has launched a pilot program in four cities to promote the presidential dollar coin.

It's hoped consumers will also spend the coins; unlike in the past, with the Sacagawea dollar that never quite caught on. The presidential series began last year with George Washington.

Four different coins will be introduced each year depicting the presidents in the order they served.

It's an alternative to the greenback, with an environmental value that goes beyond dollars and cents.

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Leanne Gregg, NBC News

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