Mount Everest, World’s Highest Garbage Dump, Sets New Waste Removal Mandates For Climbers

Photo taken on March 10, 1993 shows garbage, gas cylinders, ropes, tents, cans and plastics on Mount EVerest, nicknamed "the world's tallest garbage bin" because of tons of waste left by mountaineers. (Photo by Pierr... Photo taken on March 10, 1993 shows garbage, gas cylinders, ropes, tents, cans and plastics on Mount EVerest, nicknamed "the world's tallest garbage bin" because of tons of waste left by mountaineers. (Photo by Pierre ROYER / AFP) (Photo by PIERRE ROYER/AFP via Getty Images) MORE LESS

Mount Everest is known for many things: It’s the world’s highest mountain, an often-deadly climb, the experience of a lifetime, and… the world’s highest garbage dump. The waste situation at the mountain has reached a critical point as more and more high-priced climbing groups flock there, exhibiting, in many cases, little regard for their impact on the delicate and extreme environment. For over a decade, the Nepalese government has coordinated high-risk expeditions to help clean up waste on Mount Everest, but there seems to be a never-ending quantity of discarded cans, bottles, oxygen tanks, tents, ropes, human waste, and even dead bodies. A 2019 cleanup attempt removed 24,000 pounds of trash from the base camps.

This has led to a new mandate set by the local government, the Pasanglhamu rural municipality. Climbers will have to purchase “poo-bags” to carry their own waste, and those bags will be checked upon their return. Although this only addresses part of the problem on the mountain, it focuses on the more hazardous types of waste found around base camps.

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  1. The fact that a Pringle’s container ended up as high on the list for things to eat on an Everest summit climb, let alone it ending up as illegally dumped on the side of the world’s highest peak, tells you all you want to know about how seriously some of these folks take these climbs.

  2. Spent many years backpacking in the high sierra. Most important rule drilled into me by my father (ex trail crew) was you pack out everything you brought in.
    Never been impressed by the mt Everest tourism industry.

  3. Avatar for yskov yskov says:

    They seem to like their gin, too.

  4. Maybe just build a gondola to the top of the Hillary Step?

  5. Avatar for theod theod says:

    What about her emails?!? Is this where they are stashed?

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