Photo: Edward Burtynsky
There is a particular industrial activity that is quite unique to the small town of Alang in Gujarat Province, India. It's not manufacturing - actually, it's the exact opposite: in Alang, container and cruise ships are taken apart piece by piece ... by hand!
When large container ships can contain or ship no more, they're sent halfway round the world to so-called "breaking yards," where they're dismantled (basically by hand), their metal is salvaged, and their intact structures, down to the doors and toilet seats, are put back onto the global marketplace.
Today, these yards tend to be in Bangladesh or India – but location is just a question of cheap labor and (nonexistent) environmental regulations.
It's toxic work.