'60 Minutes' Explores America's Massive E-Waste Exports to China
While domestic recycling programs are good-intentioned, often the most toxic of our e-waste is shipped illegally back to China and boiled down for its precious metals under some of the most crude conditions you can imagine. When faced with the choice of familial poverty or the slow accumulation of poison in their bloodstream (for $8 per day), it's not hard to imagine what many rural Chinese people will choose.
So while we give Greenpeace's self-congratulatory promotions and oft-subjective "Guide to Greener Electronics" company ratings the occasional hard time, its attempts to raise e-waste awareness are commendable. Now go ahead, check the video from 60 Minutes's intrepid reporters after the break and let the guilt wash over you (especially after you see how some particularly angry e-waste workers try to jump the CBS news crew).
Update: As noted by reader Jason, a more thorough (and disturbing) exploration of these e-waste dumps can be found in a Current TV video shot last year in the same region. [From: CBS News]