Nepal winning battle to clean-up Everest

22nd May 2013

Nepal's unenviable tall order of cleaning-up the world's highest tourist attraction looks set to be solved … for good.

This is thanks to the pioneering Saving Mount Everest campaign's volunteer group of clean-up experts.

They have worked for three years in life-threatening conditions to conserve and manage the rich biological diversity of Nepal's Sagarmatha/Everest National Park.

For decades climbers on trekking holidays have sought to follow in the footsteps of Sir Edmund Hilary and conquer Everest, at 8,848m (29,029ft) the Earth's highest peak.

But behind them, high on the borders of Nepal, Tibet and China, they have left a trail of destruction - creating an average of 50 tons of rubbish each year.

The volunteers sought to introduce a sustainable waste control system which they are finalising during the current summer climbing season.

Team leader Austrian Kurt Luger said the primary concern is improving the waste management situation in the Khumbu/Everest area and to heighten awareness about it.

He said: "A new incinerator is in use and porters, locals and school students get training on how to manage waste properly."

The scheme has expanded to unite governments and organisations working to preserve the wilderness close to Nepal's greatest natural wonder, a long-time favourite destination for adventurers on specialist tours.

Hundreds of tons of human waste, discarded climbing gear, tents, oxygen bottles, abandoned food packing and even bodies littered the mountainside.

This threatened to wreck the eco-system only decades after mankind first reached it.


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