When spent circuit boards find their way to Guiyu, villagers heat them over coal fires to recover lead. The ash from the burning of coal gets dumped into the city's streams and canals, turning them black and poisoning the wells and groundwater. It's one reason why Guiyu reportedly has the highest level of cancer-causing dioxins in the world, elevated rates of miscarriages, and children with extremely high levels of lead poisoning.

One of the saddest ironies of the life cycle of consumer electronics is that many of the computer terminals, monitors, and mobile phones built in the factories of south China end their lives in heaps of contaminated dumps a few hundred miles away.

Read more:https://www.cnet.com/news/the-environmental-pitfalls-at-the-end-of-an-iphones-life/