“Bring back 8kg additional garbage,” Nepalese order to climbers

Bring back 8kg additional

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A Nepalese sherpa collecting garbage left by climbers on Mount Everest

Since Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hilary first conquered Mt Everest, 8,848 m, in 1953, tons of rubbish has piled up on the world’s highest mountain. It is becoming the world’s highest garbage dump with almost no one bothering about clearing up the trash including human waste, that is simply piling up.

Now, the government of Nepal is making new rules to end this unacceptable situation. They initiated new rules in this regard and have said the new rules were part of a package of measures
that will be introduced from the start of the climbing season next month.

Aspokesman for Nepal’s tourism ministry, Madhusudan Burlakoti, said climbers who failed to return litter to a special government office to be established at base camp would be punished. “The government has decided in order to clean up Mount Everest, each member of an expedition must bring back at least eight kilos of garbage, apart from their own trash,” he said.

“Our earlier efforts have not been very effective. This time if they don’t bring back garbage we will take legal action and penalise them.”

Environmental groups say that the growing number of climbers attempting to scale the mountain has led to increased pollution, with an estimated 50 tonnes of rubbish left on the slopes each year, The garbage – some of which dates back several decades – includes oxygen and cooking gas canisters, old tents, food packaging, human waste and several corpses, which do not properly decompose in the extreme cold.

Last year was the busiest in Everest’s history, with 810 climbers attempting to scale the Himalayan peak from Nepal. More attempted the climb from the Tibetan side.

The overcrowding came into sharp focus when a brawl erupted at about 7300m between European climbers and Nepalese Sherpas. Ueli Steck, a Swiss speed-climber, was forced to flee from the mountain after Sherpas threw rocks at his tent, forcing other western climbers to intervene to save him.

Tourist ministry officials said soldiers and police will now be stationed at base camp to resolve any security issues.

Adding to overcrowding fears, last month Nepal — which earns millions of dollars a year from climbers — said it would slash the cost of permits to about $12000 per climber, down from $28,000.

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