There is an E-waste problem in Chennai. For the last year I have been poking around back alleys where half naked people break old computers, cell phones and electronic gear into small bite-sized pieces in order to harvest the gold and precious metals inside. When they burn the junk in huge piles in Guindy and Velichery everyone downwind gets exposed to a potentially toxic cocktail of lead, cadmium, mercury and dioxin.

Yesterday afternoon a story I wrote on the issue aired on NPR. It’s my first full-fledged radio story and it looks like I’m going to be covering quite a bit of India with a microphone in the next year or so. You can listen to the story here.

I’ve written on E-waste before for .net in a story titled “India’s Great Techno Trash Heap” and have another version of the piece that should show up in the UK some time this month.

I’ve also taken a ton of photo of the computer smashing industry that you might want to check out.

Here’s a gallery from last week that I took for NPR.

Here are about a dozen pictures from last year that I took while working for .net.