Asia

Single-use plastics banned in Nepal's Everest region

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media caption11 tonnes of rubbish found on Everest

Nepalese authorities have banned single-use plastics in the Everest region in a bid to cut down on waste left by climbers.

The ban will take effect in the Khumbu Pasang Lhamu municipality from January 2020.

A local official told AFP news agency that by starting now, "it will help keep our region, the Everest and the mountains clean long term".

Authorities recently cleared 11 tonnes of rubbish from Mount Everest.

All plastic drinking bottles and plastics of less than 30 microns in width will be banned in the province. No penalty has yet been announced for violators.

Trekking companies, airlines and the Nepal Mountaineering Association will work with local officials to enforce the ban.

Image copyright AFP PHOTO / PROJECT POSSIBLE
Image caption A record number of people tried to climb Everest in the 2019 season

Khumbu Pasang Lhamu receives tens of thousands of tourists every year, and the government is introducing more and more measures to limit the effect they have on the area.

In August, an advisory panel recommended that people seeking to summit Everest should employ experienced guides and should first climb a Nepali peak of at least 6,500m (21,325ft).

Currently, a permit for the world's highest mountain costs $11,000. The panel suggested increasing this to at least $35,000.

Earlier in 2019 at least 11 people died or went missing on the peak, of a record 885 people who attempted to climb Everest this climbing season.

More on this story