Mount Everest climbers directed to bring poop back to base camp

Climbers on Mount Everest have been requested to carry their poop and return it to the base camp for disposal, according to a BBC report. The Pasang Lhamu rural municipality made the decision because of the mountains have begun to stink and the fact that the severe temperatures in the area prevent the excrement from completely decomposing.

The chairman of the rural municipality of Pasang Lhamu, Mingma Sherpa, stated “We are receiving reports that human feces are visible on rocks and some climbers are becoming sick. It is unacceptable and this damages our reputation. Poop bags must be purchased at the base camp for those who wish to ascend both Mount Lhotse, the neighboring mountain and the highest peak in the world. They’ll checked upon their return with these luggage.

Notably, mountaineers spend extended periods of time at base camp during the climbing season, where separate tents are made for restrooms and other needs. But once they start climbing, they usually dig a hole to poop in. When climbing to the Mount Everest, very few people return with their waste in biodegradable bags.

According to the Chief Executive Officer of the non-governmental organization (NGO) Sagarmatha Pollution Control Committee, “waste remains a major issue, especially in higher-up camps where you can’t reach.”

Numerous cleanup initiatives have been carried out in the area, including a yearly effort headed by the Nepali Army. The organization estimates that between South Kol, also known as Camp Four, which is located closer to the summit of Everest, and Camp One, which is at the base of the mountain, there are about three tonnes of human waste.

Climbing guide Stephan Keck, who leads multiple Mount Everest expeditions, asserted that South Col had developed a reputation as an “open toilet”.

In anticipation of the upcoming climbing season, which starts in March, the NGO is already importing over 8,000 poop bags from the US for an anticipated 400 foreign climbers and 800 support staff.

(With inputs from agencies)

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