1993 Photo Contest, Nature, 3rd prize

Philippe Bourseiller & Jacque Durieux


01 January, 1992

The Kawah Ijen volcano spews ten tons of sulfur into its crater every day. And every day about 100 men brave the toxic gases to dislodge the sulfur with iron bars, a piece of cloth in their mouths as their only protection. The sulfur is collected in baskets, which are carefully balanced on a bamboo rod. The baskets with sulfur are carried up the steep crater wall, and on to a village 37km away. Eighty percent of the sulfur, which is melted and re-solidified in sheets of 'yellow gold', is used for the bleaching of cane sugar.

About the photographer

Philippe Bourseiller & Jacque Durieux

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