THE FOX  & THE ROOSTER

 

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Electronic waste, or e-waste, is rapidly becoming the fastest-growing source of waste in the world. Gold within e-waste exists in the circuitry of many household electronics such as computer equipment, televisions, screens, cameras, and mobile phones. E-waste is highly toxic, often containing substances such as lead, mercury and cadmium that are fatal to human health and the environment.

 

The world’s largest producer of e-waste is the United States – with an estimated 7 million tonnes produced annually. Instead of recycling e-waste, which can be costly and time-consuming, much of the waste from the United States is exported and dumped into developing areas across Asia and Africa. Since December 2015, the majority of the 5000 waste workshops within the infamous town of Guiyu in the Guangdong Province have been shut down and scattered and relocated by the Chinese government in Southern China, in efforts to reduce pollution.

 

Aqua Regia is a mixture of nitric acid and hydrochloric acid. It is a yellow-orange fuming liquid and was so named by alchemists because it can dissolve the noble metals gold and platinum.  In the third of alchemist, Basil Valentine’s  ‘Twelve keys’   a rooster can be seen eating a fox, eating a rooster in the background. The fox represents Aqua Regia.

 

 

There are many ways to extract e-waste. In this illegal processing plant near Shenzhen, in Southern China, Aqua Regia is used. In this particular instance the process takes a few hours few hours and they mostly use circuit boards to collect gold: