We think of our cell phones and laptops as clean technology, but they contain trace amounts of valuable metals like copper and gold. And when junked electronics are processed by the very poor, out in the open, they can lead to dangerous levels of pollution. That’s what happens at the Agbogbloshie dump site outside Accra, the capital of Ghana. Sheathed cables are burnt in the open to get at the copper material inside, often using Styrofoam packaging as fuel. Those cables contain heavy metals like lead, which can migrate from the smoke into the soil. Samples taken from around Agbogbloshie indicate lead levels as high as 18,125 parts per million—as much as 45 times higher than U.S. standards. As many as 250,000 Ghanaians might be at risk.
These are some of the evidence of the negative impact of industrialization, that is why environmental compliance is important. Industries should be responsible for their waste: to protect the stakeholders, the business itself, and the environment.
If you'd like to see a more visual account of Agbobogbloshie, Ghana take a look at the project I started earlier this year which dives into the work and lifestyle of the children who work there.
Perhaps it is because China has made "progress" by outsourcing pollution to other developing countries just as developed countries have outsourced it to China?
@xiaochensu surely!... it is a beautiful country....