46 moun­tains in Ti­bet at­tract over 20,000 climbers in 28 years

Global Times US Edition - - CHINA - By Liu Caiyu

South­west China’s Ti­bet Au­ton­o­mous Re­gion has opened 46 moun­tains to global vis­i­tors, in­clud­ing Mount Qo­molangma, known in the West as Mount Ever­est, at­tract­ing more than 20,000 climbers from 40 coun­tries and re­gions in the past 28 years, the Ti­bet Moun­tain As­so­ci­a­tion told the Global Times on Tues­day.

Suo­nan, the sec­re­tary of the Ti­bet Moun­tain As­so­ci­a­tion, told the Global Times that the as­so­ci­a­tion, re­spon­si­ble for moun­tains above 5,500 me­ters in Ti­bet, had re­ceived more than 20,000 climbers from 40 coun­tries and re­gions, in­clud­ing Ger­many, France and South Korea.

Ti­bet is home to five moun­tains above 8,000 me­ters and thou­sands above 6,000 me­ters. Ti­bet has opened 46 moun­tains to the pub­lic. Of them, Mount Qo­molangma is the most pop­u­lar, and Cho Oyu Moun­tain and Shisha­pangma Moun­tain are ranked sec­ond and third, re­spec­tively, Suo­nan said.

In 2018, 186 of 762 for­eign climbers from 36 coun­tries and re­gions suc­cess­fully reached the summit of Mount Qo­molangma, ac­cord­ing to a state­ment sent by the as­so­ci­a­tion.

Com­pared to climb­ing Mount Qo­molangma from the Nepal side, the Ti­bet side is more con­ve­nient for trans­porta­tion and has bet­ter ecol­ogy in terms of garbage col­lect­ing and dis­posal, Suo­nan said.

Both lo­cal farm­ers and pro­fes­sional moun­tain-climb­ing guides are re­spon­si­ble for clean­ing up the waste on the moun­tains. Af­ter the waste is trans­ported to the camp, it will be sorted out into re­cy­clable and un­re­cy­clable items.

Some camps at Mount Qo­molangma also use portable toi­lets, which pro­tects the en­vi­ron­ment and make it easy to gather waste.

Ti­bet has two moun­tain sea­sons in a year – spring and au­tumn. The dead­line for sign­ing up is Fe­bru­ary 28 for spring and July 31 for au­tumn in 2019.

To en­sure the safety of climbers, no per­son can ap­ply for a climb­ing per­mit af­ter the dead­line. With­out a per­mit, tourists can­not climb or take pho­tos within the moun­tain­ous ar­eas, China Ti­bet News re­ported in Septem­ber.

Climb­ing teams have to ap­ply for a per­mit to climb moun­tains above 5,500 me­ters, in­clud­ing climb­ing time and route. Each team must have at least two peo­ple, ac­cord­ing to the lo­cal reg­u­la­tion. Unau­tho­rized climbers face a penalty of up to 30,000 yuan ($4,320).

The vis­its of climbers had also boosted the lo­cal econ­omy, which had helped gen­er­ate 130 mil­lion yuan of profit for lo­cal farm­ers and more than 60 mil­lion yuan for lo­cal busi­nesses as of 2017, Suo noted.

Farm­ers are the main freight car­ri­ers in the moun­tain­ous ar­eas. Each of them can earn more than 330 yuan a day plus 660 yuan in cloth­ing sub­sidy. Their yaks can carry 45 kilo­grams of goods, such as oxy­gen bot­tles and tents.

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