Everest base camp melting

Nepal is removing Everest Base Camp from the melting Khumbu Glacier BBC informed of.

Research suggests that the Khumbu Glacier is thinning rapidly as a result of the changing climate. Scott Watson, a researcher at the University of Leeds who studies glaciers, said: “We see rock fall and meltwater movement on the surface of glaciers that can be dangerous.” BBC,

The current base camp location is becoming unstable due to melting snow and is no longer safe. Climbers say cracks have appeared in the ground overnight, and guides say they expect more avalanches and further snow to fall at the current location. The new base camp will be about 200 to 400 meters lower in altitude – and in a location that doesn’t get snow throughout the year.

Climate change isn’t the only contributing factor, however: the sheer number of people passing through base camp adds to the instability. Khimlal Gautam, a member of the committee that recommended the move, said, “For example, we found that people urinate around 4,000 liters at the base camp every day.” BBC, “And the massive amounts of fuels like kerosene and gas we burn there for cooking and heating will certainly have an impact on glacier ice.”

Conditions on Everest are rapidly deteriorating overall, not just at Base Camp. Other glaciers are melting, some are losing ice that took hundreds of years to develop. This is making the climb more dangerous. The thaw is also revealing the frozen, dead bodies and piles of rubbish from past climbers.

Nepal’s tourism department is yet to discuss plans for the move with local stakeholders, including local communities that may be affected by the change. But if everything goes according to plan, the base camp can go ahead by 2024.

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