Quick look: World’s largest e-waste dump

The town of Guiyu in China is one of the world's largest electronic waste dumps

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

e-waste

Reuters recently took a look at what the town of Guiyu in China, which is commonly known, as one of the world's largest electronic waste dump sites. A particularly polluted place as you might imagine, Guiyu exists to salvage bits of valuable metals such as gold, copper and aluminum mostly from hard drives, mobile phones, computer screens and computers from around the world though sources have changed: China now produces 6.1 million metric tons of e-waste a year second only to the US with 7.2 million tons , according to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

e-waste

A recycling electronic waste factory is seen beside a field in the township of Guiyu in China's southern Guangdong province.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

e-waste

Metal cases are piled up on the outskirts of the township of Guiyu.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

e-waste

Buffalos are seen adjacent to workshops recycling plastic components from electronic waste.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

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A motor tricycle transports electronic waste to one of the small workshops for recycling.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

e-waste

Workers illegally distribute old computers and printers to others for future recycling outside the government designated recycling center.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

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A polluted river flows past a workshop used for processing plastic components of electronic waste at the township of Guiyu.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

e-waste

Another shot of a polluted river.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

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The stench of burnt plastic envelops the small town of Guiyu, while some rivers are black with industrial effluent, Reuters says.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

e-waste

Circuit boards lie inside a home.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

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A toy tricycle is seen on circuit boards at a workshop. Children living there have abnormally high levels of lead in their blood, according to China's Shantou University.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

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Old cellular phone components are discarded inside a workshop. At its peak, some 5,000 workshops in the village recycled 15,000 tons of e-waste.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

e-waste

Motor tricycles carrying electronic waste are commonplace.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste

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REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

e-waste

A new factory, which is to be used for recycling waste, is under construction at a government-managed area in the township of Guiyu.

RELATED: Daunting photos of a village built to handle electronic waste