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Mount Everest Climbers to Carry Back Their Own Waste: Experts Cite Concerns Over the Increasing Odor of the World’s Highest Mountain


Mount Everest climbers will start to bring their own poo back to base camp after experts warned that the world’s highest mountain has ‘begun to stink.’

The new rules come amid concerns excrement left on Everest does not fully degrade, with some climbers even falling sick.    

‘Our mountains have begun to stink,’ Mingma Sherpa, chairman of Pasang Lhamu rural municipality, told the BBC.

Before the new rules, climbers scaling Mount Everest used to either dig holes to go to the toilet or simply go out in the open. 

However, with temperatures known to drop to -60°C (-76°F), excrement does not fully degrade, leaving human stools visible on rocks. 

To counter this issue, Pasang Lhamu has decided to force people climbing Mount Everest and the nearby Mount Lhotse to order poo bags at base camp to collect their waste. 

These will then be ‘checked on their return’, according to the BBC. 

While the idea of carrying your waste around might sound disgusting, the poo bags are specially designed to make the collection as dignified as possible.  

According to the BBC, chemicals in the bags not only solidify the waste but also render it ‘largely odourless.’

Each bag can be used five to six times, which means most climbers should only need to take two with them during their expedition. 

This isn’t the first time that poo bags have been given to climbers, according to Mr Mingma. 

‘Mountaineers have been using such bags on Mount Denali (the highest peak in North America) and in the Antarctic as well, that is why we have been advocating for it,’ he said. 

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