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The Ijen Man (360 Video)

Indonesian province of East Java is home to Kawah Ijen volcano, also known as the Blue Fire Volcano. Hovering some 2.5 kilometers over the sea level, its crater contains a surprise in its depths, a sulfur lake about 200 meters deep. The volcano is dormant, emitting moderate amounts of gas continuously which, once they condense on the rock, turn into sulfur deposits. Sulphur mining is the main source of income for the local population. The miners use very scant protection in this highly dangerous process when they get into the crater to break off blocks of sulfur, surrounded by continuous gas and liquid sulfur outbreaks. They carry individual loads weighing from 45 to 90 kg on their backs to the refinery located a few kilometers away. On the average, a miner makes two to three such trips per day. They average pay for a day’s work amounts to 50 thousand Indonesian Rupiah, which equals about $5. Most of sulfur mined here is used by local factories to bleach sugar and for rubber vulcanization. 

Film produced by RRI (Radio Republik Indonesia).