Every year thousands of mountaineers and porters come to the Everest for several weeks for trekking and many of them also to try and attempt a peak ascent. Behind them, they leave not only footprints – but tonnes of organic waste, broken or lost equipment and many other things.
Every year expeditions are dedicated to cleaning Mount Everest, some past examples are:
Eco Everest Expedition 2011, led by Apa Sherpa, collected 1,100kg of rubbish. The expedition has been undertaken annually since 2008 and so far cleaned a total of 13,000kg of rubbish from the Everest region.
The Everest Summiteer Association’s Saving Mount Everest 2011 could collect 8,110 kg in the last month. 3,210 kg of compostable waste will be disposed of at Namche. Other waste will be brought to Kathmandu for recycling and reuse.
It is important for climbers and local people to understand the adverse effects of leftovers on Mount Everest, to keep the area a beautiful and pristine natural site. The expeditions, therefore, do not only clean the mountain, but also work in building awareness.