From Highest Peak to Stinkiest; Poo Threatens Mount Everest
Nepal's mountaineering authorities have voiced their concerns at the ever-amassing amounts of human faeces at the peak of Mount Everest... We're looking at you Omar Samra.
What to do with all the poo left behind by countless climbers that have attempt to conquer Mount Everest with every passing year? According to chief of Nepal’s mountaineering association the poo problem is out of control causing pollution and threatening to spread disease atop the world’s highest peak.
Every year, over 700 climbers and guides spend almost two months attempting to conquer the world’s highest peak leaving behind large amount trash, faeces, and urine. Sadly this issue continues to go unaddressed, as climbers assume that snow will cover all. Looking to bring the issue to the forefront, chief of Nepal’s mountaineering association told reports that “Climbers usually dig holes in the snow for their toilet use and leave the human waste there,” adding that the waste has been “piling up” for years around the four camps.
Climbers spend weeks acclimatising around the four camps set up between the base camp at 5,300m (17,380ft) and the 8,850m-high (29,035ft) summit. The camps have tents and some essential equipment and supplies, but do not have toilets resulting in climbers disposing of their waste improperly. The only toilets that can be found are in the lower base camp, where toilet tents are equipped with drums to store waste, which in turn get carried down to a lower area by someone with quite possibly the worst job in the world.
Also joining the call for immediate action is Dawa Steven Sherpa, an experienced climber that has been leading Everest cleanup expeditions since 2008. “It is a health hazard and the issue needs to be addressed,” he explains, also condemning the Nepal Government for not devising a plan and tackling the pressing poo issue.
Understanding that new rules are needed to keep the mountain pristine, the government has imposed a new policy last year requiring climbers to leave a $4000 deposit that they will forfeit if they fail to bring down to base camp at least 8kgs of trash. The newly applied law is expected to drastically help reduce the tons of waste left on the mountain, but little to nothing to stop the impending crap-alanche.
Arguably sharing a portion of the blame for turning Mount Everest into a must-shit destination is New Zealand climber Edmund Hillary and his Sherpa guide, Tenzing Norgay, who in 1953 became the first to reach its summit and ultimately inspired over 4000 climbers to follow suit. Hillary obviously has no control over governmental policy, but it was literally his shit that launched a thousand shits that are turning Mount Everest into Mount Kaka.
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