There's Gold In Them Thar Sewage Plants

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A sewage treatment plant in Japan has turned out to be a gold mine — literally. Officials say they've retrieved nearly 2 kilograms of gold per metric ton of ash from the sludge they incinerate. That's almost 50 times what miners find in Japan's Hishikari Mine — one of the world's top gold mines. Plant officials believe they're getting so much gold because of manufacturers in the area that use the precious metal in making precision instruments.

RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. In Japan, a sewage treatment plant has turned out to be a gold mine, literally. Officials say they've retrieved nearly two kilograms of gold per metric ton of ash from the sludge they incinerate. That's almost 50 times what miners find in Japan's Hishikari mine, one of the top gold mines in the world. Plant officials believe they're getting so much gold because manufacturers in the area use the precious metal in making precision instruments.

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