Breaking Travel News Business Travel Destination Government News Hospitality Industry Nepal News People Resorts Responsible Safety Sports Sustainable Tourism Travel Wire News

Nepal: Tourists and climate change threaten Everest

Nepal: Tourists and climate change threaten Everest
Nepal: Tourists and climate change threaten Everest
Written by Harry Johnson

According to Nepal’s Department of Tourism Director-General, the country’s officials are planning to move Mount Everest base camp about 400 meters (1,312 feet) to the south of its present location.

“It is basically about adapting to the changes we are seeing at the base camp, and it has become essential for the sustainability of the mountaineering business itself,” Taranath Adhikari said.

“We are now preparing for the relocation, and we will soon begin consultation with all stakeholders.” 

Mr. Adhikari added that rampant erosion caused by tourist activity, as well as Khumbu glacier’s melting had made the current base camp location unsafe.

Nepal is planning to find an ice-free location for establishing the new base camp. Once a stable site has been located, the government will discuss the move with local communities and begin the monumental process of moving the base camp infrastructure down the mountain. Tourism officials estimate the move could come as soon as 2024. 

Around1,500 people visit the world’s highest mountain during its busiest periods, starting their climb from the base camp atop the Khumbu glacier at 5,364 meters (17.598 feet) elevation. The glacial ice is deteriorating rapidly, at a rate of one meter (3.38 feet) per year and losing 9.5 million cubic meters of water annually. 

Most alarmingly, cracks and crevasses have been appearing overnight in the areas of the base camp where people sleep.

The erosion is not caused by just climate change.

“People urinate around 4,000 liters at the base camp every day,” a member of the base camp moving committee said, adding that large amounts of kerosene and gas used for cooking and staying warm also contribute to the melting ice.

Tourism is one of the four principal industries in Nepal, with mountain-climbing being the one that brings in the foreign visitors.

Even during the global coronavirus pandemic, Nepal did not stop issuing mountain climbing permits, only limiting the number of Everest climbers allowed to summit the peak.

About the author

Harry Johnson

Harry Johnson has been the assignment editor for eTurboNews for mroe than 20 years. He lives in Honolulu, Hawaii, and is originally from Europe. He enjoys writing and covering the news.

Leave a Comment

Share to...