Home    What's new    Search    Contact Us   Sign in / Register
· You are here: Home • Our work • Schools and education » • School Members Area » • Online lectures » • Lecture resources
About us Our work What's on Geography today Press & Media News Join us
Royal Geographical Society (with IBG): the heart of geography
Malaria, mosquitos and maps: Simon Hay
A Fact-Based World View: Dr Hans Rosling
Why are the worlds big rivers so different: Professor Phil Ashworth
Flooding, climate change and the resilience of cities: Alex Nickson
Future oceans: Professor Callum Roberts
Junkyard planet: Adam Minter
London versus the rest: Evan Davis
Mayhem on the Mekong: Professor Steve Darby
Saving the last cheetahs of Iran: Dr Luke Hunter
Siberia - its history and its people: Professor Janet Hartley
Somalia - The World’s Most Failed State?: James Fergusson
The Landgrabbers: Fred Pearce
What’s going on in Greenland?: Professor Alun Hubbard
Will the shale gail prevail?: Michael Bradshaw

Junkyard planet: Adam Minter

November 2014

The collection of our recycling is only one half of a story which is actually global in scale and represents a multibillion dollar industry worldwide

Junkyard planet


0 minutes – Introduction

2 minutes – Lecture begins

3 minutes – What is a Chinese scrapyard like? The Foshan Recycling Centre, China

7 minutes – Where does the scrap come from? A global business

10 minutes – How does the USA recycle copper?

14 minutes – How does China recycle copper?

18 minutes – Why does the scrap go to China?

24 minutes – The economics of the recycling trade

27 minutes – The negative side of the recycling trade

30 minutes – Changing our perceptions of the recycling trade

32 minutes – Who are the recyclers historically?

44 minutes – The precision and skill of the recyclers


AQA A – difficulties of disposal of waste, much of which is toxic; development of China as the new economic giant
AQA B – explore a range of globalisation factors, including changing markets, relative labour costs and developments in technology
AQA iGCSE – problems associated with increasing levels of waste
Edexcel A – the differences in waste production between LICs and HICs; how waste is recycled at a local scale and how recycled material is used
Edexcel B – examine urban challenges in the developed world including waste disposal demands
Edexcel iGCSE – the rise of the global economy and the factors encouraging it
OCR A – links through trade between a chosen local place and a chosen non-UK place
OCR B – the environmental, social and economic reasons why the location of economic activity changes
WJEC B – an overview of the factors that drive interdependence

A Level:
AQA – recycling and its alternatives; flows of capital, labour, products and services
Edexcel – global networks creating flows of trade and money
OCR – study of an urban area to illustrate the problems of managing increasing volumes of waste
WJEC – the impact of outsourcing and offshoring

In the Members' Area:

  • View the lecture
  • Read the full article
  • View lesson ideas and activities

Sign in to read the full article. If you are not already a member you can join us as a School Member or Young Geographer and access our vast library of educational articles.


· Accessibility statement
· Terms and Conditions, and Cookie use
· Contact Webmaster
· Download Adobe Reader
· RGS-IBG is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Bookmark and Share