The Big Picture: Beijing's urban e-waste economy

Head out of Beijing in a north-westerly direction, and you might pass Dongxiaokou village. Perched on the outskirts of town, the Dongxiaokou is where a lot of Beijing's electrical waste goes to be forgotten about. Not by everyone, though. The village has become a hub for immigrant workers that make a living plundering the e-waste for scrap materials or repairable items. Despite the tough living conditions and low income they receive, residents are concerned that plans to urbanize the area could mean an end to their livelihood.

[Image credit: Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters]