Skip to comments.Chinese Pan for Gold in the Sewage
Posted on 11/17/2007 6:48:22 PM PST by JACKRUSSELL
A town in southern China is proving that where there's muck, there's gold and silver.
In one of the most extreme signs of China's modern grasp of entrepreneurial possibilities, gold panners are striking deals with jewellery factories to buy the contents of their septic tanks.
The price of precious metals has soared to such record highs on the world's markets that sifting the tanks' contents for scrapings and offcuts has become a profitable business.
A reporter from a Chinese newspaper found a new breed of waste collectors touring the jewellery factories near Daluotang, a township near the city of Guangzhou.
They told him that small processing factories had discovered gold and silver filings in the septic tanks that had either washed off workers' hands and faces or been ingested accidentally.
The collectors were paid to deliver the contents of septic tanks from factories and dormitory compounds. Processors would then sift, pan and finally recycle the tanks.
Contracts depended on the volume of effluent one building sold the rights to its sewage for 140,000 yuan a year (about £9,000). A smaller tank fetched 40,000 yuan (£2,500).
"The factories watch over the gold powder produced at each stage of their processing," one man said. "Once, I was carrying some waste water for a boss here, I spilled a little and he began to shout at me for the waste."
Another said: "Because compounds here have mostly been rented out to gold factory workers, people believe the gold and silver powder that gets stuck to hair, skin or even in their stomach eventually settles in the septic tank."
China is profiting from its entrance into a global but uncertain trading system.
The price of precious metals has risen as investors seek a safe haven from the global credit crisis and the long-term fall in the value of the dollar. Gold is trading at nearly £385 an ounce, its highest level since 1980.
Think I’ll pass on the gold fillings.
Hu Flung Pu
My dad, who used heavy equipment to clean out chicken houses always said chicken s#!t smelled like gold!
Yeah, I passed a nugget this morning...
The Poop Rush.
I’ve panned gold, but I’m not panning that sh*t!
Dere’s gold in dem dare turds.
Talk about the Mother Load.
pi ing yu
Oh thit, what next.
Thanks for the ping JACK.
Its just stool’s gold.
Anyone want to buy stock in my new Chinese mining company, Pa Ning Du?
I recall hearing about some entrepreneurial ladies in Alaska that used to do the laundry of the gold miners without charge to collect the gold dust.
Are they talking about filtering gold from the run-off of the jewellery factories, or the human waste sewage? There is a big and nasty difference between the two, and it depends on the factories having two septic tanks, one for the toilets and the others for the machines. If not, disgusting!
The Chinese have become so acquisitive I’m sure Karl Marx is spinning in his grave. The last major communist nation now makes it’s living making trinkets for and at the demand of the capitalist world while trashing it’s environment.
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