Mount Everest becomes 'rubbish dump' as tonnes of waste litters surface
Last year an estimated total of 40 tonnes of litter was brought back down by climbers, but there is still a huge amount left to clear.
1. Mount Everest - the tallest mountain in the world.
It's hard to believe that the tallest mountain in the world is littered with tonnes of waste. But the truth is that Mount Everest is covered in huge piles of litter and resembles a rubbish dump. More than 4000 people have reached the summit since 1953.
2. The Mount has been branded a 'garbage dump'.
On average, it takes around two months to complete the expedition; huge mounds of plastic, food waste and abandoned oxygen tanks have been dumped by climbers in their quest to reach the top.
3. Base Camp is one of the most polluted areas of the mountain.
Huge areas such as Base Camp are rife with litter, causing one of the world's most incredible natural wonders to be branded the 'world's highest garbage dump.'
4. Climbers are now fined if they do not bring down their rubbish.
In 2017, climbers brought down nearly 25 tonnes of rubbish and 15 tonnes of human waste, which, equates to three double-decker busses, according to the SPCC (Sagarmatha Pollution Control Committee). This comes as the Nepalese government have implemented a $4,000 rubbish deposit scheme, in which climbing teams would be refunded if each person brought down at least 8kg of waste.
5. Sherpas are also being asked to help tackle the waste crisis.
Nepalese sherpa, who oversee the climbing expeditions, are also committed to reducing the vast amount of litter left behind by mountaineers, and get paid an extra $2 per kilo they bring down.
6. Traces of litter even reach the summit.
Those who reach the summit, which stands at 8,848 metres above sea level, often like to leave a momentum to mark their achievements. However, the SPCC are hoping to send a whopping 100 tonnes of materials abounded on Mount Everest to be recycled this year.