Gracias a mi amigo @Hansbrinker (si no lo sigues ¿a qué estás esperando?) descubro que Robin Hammond ha publicado en Proof (un blog de National Geographic sobre las historias detrás de las fotografías) un artículo con impactantes fotografías sobre las dificultades para la obtención de materias primas en Lagos:
Lagos is Africa’s biggest city and it’s getting bigger every day, with thousands from around Nigeria and West Africa moving here in search of a better life. This ever expanding population is continually pushing at the edges of the city, and Lagos is spreading upward and outward, unfurling over Nigeria’s map.
You can’t have a concrete jungle without concrete. And that is why we were going sailing.
Most of the sand for the concrete used in expanding Lagos comes from the bottom of Lagos Lagoon. Those rough sailors on those rickety boats are actually miners. The sand diggers, as they’re known, are like many of the miners I’ve seen around the continent—physically impressive, doing exhausting, dangerous work for a pittance. The only difference is that instead of mining underground, these men mine under water.
The sand diggers are a crucial part of the city’s boom and growth. Early every morning they are tugged out into the lagoon. They lower ladders from their boats, 13 to 16 feet down to the lagoon bed, take a deep breath, dive down to the bottom, fill a bucket of sand, then haul it up the ladder and tip it into the hull.