Read the text below, then decide whether the statements below are true or false.
News items in March 2015 reported that human waste left by climbers on Mount Everest had become a problem that was causing pollution and threatening to spread disease on the world’s highest peak:
Since Edmund Hillary and his Sherpa, Tenzing Norgay, first did so in 1953, more than 4,400 climbers have reached the summit of Mount Everest, most of them very recently. In 2013 alone, Everest was climbed by 658 people during the yearly two-month climbing window in spring. The previous year, 234 climbers reached the peak on a single day. The waste they leave behind needs to be disposed of properly to keep the mountain pristine.
Sherpa Ang Tschering said that the accumulative amounts left over the last decades give off an “unpleasant odour”. Human waste was becoming a bigger problem than the oxygen bottles, torn tents, broken ladders, and cans or wrappers also left behind by climbers, who wanted to avoid carrying extra weight. While some climbers carry disposable travel toilet bags to use in the higher camps, the waste from those who do not is a health hazard. "Discarded in ice pits, the human waste remains under the snow," he told reporters. "When washed down by glaciers (when the snow melts), it comes out in the open." He added that the waste also posed a health hazard to people dependent on water from rivers fed by the region's melting glaciers.
Base camp has toilet facilities and there are drums to store the waste. Once filled, the drums are carried to a lower area. But the four higher camps on the way to the summit do not have toilets. “The climbers usually dig holes in the snow for their toilet use and leave the human waste there,” Tshering said.
New regulations have been imposed which require climbers to pay a deposit of $4,000 to be forfeited by any expedition from which a climber fails to bring back 8kg of rubbish and human waste. But even these well-intentioned efforts at conservation have run into problems. The nearby village of Gork Shep has served as a dump for Mount Everest waste, but has already reached its limit. The remote terrain and inadequate infrastructure make waste disposal a particularly challenging problem.
In 2010 the Mount Everest Biogas Project was started up, which aims to deploy equipment on Mount Everest that converts human waste into methane. The idea is to adapt existing biogas digester systems for the remote villages in the vicinity of Mount Everest. In these extreme environments temperatures are often too low for the conversion process in the standard digesters. The proposed solution will provide direct and indirect benefits to the people of the Khumbu valley in the form of a clean-burning renewable energy source (methane gas), an odourless nutrient-rich fertilizer and local employment during construction and long-term operation.
The waste left behind does not smell pleasant.
Discarded oxygen bottles, ladders and tents are health hazard.
If a climber brings back 8kg of rubbish, his $4,000 is returned.
The biogas project will provide jobs after the systems are built.