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Mt. Everest is at risk because of human waste

Mt. Everest is at risk because of human waste

Ang Tshering, the chief of Nepal’s mountaineering association, said that human waste left by climbers on Mount Everest has become a problem, which is causing pollution and spreading diseases among climbers on the world’s highest peak. This issue has not yet addressed.

During the climbing season, more than 700 climbers and guides spend nearly two months on Everest’s slopes, and leave large amounts of feces and urine, which is accumulated for years.

In order to make Mt. Everest on the pristine condition, the Nepal government has to take action so that climbers can dispose of their waste properly, Ang Tshering said.

Before reaching the peak, climbers have to spend weeks on the mountain; climbers and guides set camps around four designated areas set up between the base camps. The base camps have tents, essential equipment and supplies, but don’t have toilets.

“Climbers usually dig holes in the snow for their toilet use and leave the human waste there,” Tshering said, adding that the waste has been piling up for years around four camps.

Dawa Steven Sherpa, leader of Everest cleanup expeditions since 2008, said some climbers carry disposable travel toilet bags to use in the higher camps. “It is a health hazard and the issue needs to be addressed,” he added.

The government imposed new rules last year requiring each climber to bring down to the base camp 8 kilograms of trash, the amount that is estimated a climber discards along the route. Climbing teams must leave a $4,000 deposit if they don’t abide by the regulations.

Updated : 2021-09-25 17:54 GMT+08:00