Tons of trash removed as China cleans up world's highest mountain


Volunteers transport bags of waste with their motorcycles in a cleaning campaign on the north slope of Mount Qomolangma in Southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, May 10, 2017. (Photo: China News Service/Chen Taobin)

China's Tibet Autonomous Region launched a nine-day clean-up campaign of Mount Qomolangma last Saturday, with four tons of waste and debris collected in the first five days, Xinhua News Agency reported.

With an altitude of over 8,840 meters, Mount Qomolangma is the highest mountain in the world.

Every year, the north face of the mountain attracts around 60,000 visitors, who often leave numerous tin cans, plastic bags, stove equipment, discarded tents, oxygen tanks and mountain climbing paraphernalia at their campsites.

Heightened human activities have left unacceptable levels of garbage on the "Roof of the World," said Nyima Cering, deputy director of Tibet Sports Administration. He added that it was the first time the administration had worked with the Tingri county government in Xigaze Prefecture on such a campaign.

The ongoing clean-up, which involved both Chinese and international volunteers, focuses on the campsites at altitudes between 5,200 and 6,500 meters.

The campaign has highlighted China's increasing awareness of environmental protection, 62-year-old Swiss volunteer Kari Kobler told Xinhua.