How are our 'recycled' TVs & computers ending up in a toxic dump in Ghana? Dateline investigates on Sunday.
By
Dateline

23 Sep 2011 - 2:40 PM  UPDATED 26 Aug 2013 - 9:20 AM

Ever wondered where your old TVs and computers go after you send them off for recycling or to charity?

An investigation for Sunday's Dateline has found a mountain of old electronic equipment dumped in what were once picturesque wetlands in Ghana in West Africa.

The e-waste is poisoning everything around it, including the scavenging children burning the wires to try and get at the valuable metal inside. Meanwhile, acrid smoke drifts across the Agbogbloshie area of the capital Accra, and even the city's main food market.

Stamped across the equipment, the names of companies and government bodies in countries like Australia, Britain and the United States, with many hard drives still intact and containing potentially confidential information.

Exporting hazardous waste to developing countries is strictly regulated, so how is some of it ending up in Ghana illegally? Do the companies disposing of it even know what's happening? And what do the Australian authorities plan to do about it?

Watch the story from Giovana Vitola on the Dateline website.