Mountaineers clean up 5,000kg trash in three years
ISLAMABAD The Mountain and Glacier Protection Organisation (MGPO) has so far removed about 5,000 kilogrammes of garbage from mountain and trekking routes in the Northern Areas of Pakistan since it was established in 2001.
Aisha Khan, president of the non-government organisation MGPO, said this while briefing guests, including some foreign dignitaries, on the achievements and future plans of her organisation on Saturday. She said that MGPO has conducted different clean-up expeditions along the entire route of the Baltoro Glacier and to the base camps of K-2, Gasherbrum-I, Gasherbrum-II and Broad Peak in the Karakoram Range.
Giving an account of her trekking trip to the Northern Areas and the formation of MGPO, she said that during her visit to the area in 1998 she found lots of garbage left by trekkers and mountaineers in the area. “This really disturbed me. It was also a threat to the environment and ecology of the mountains. Therefore, I decided to fight for the maintenance of the natural beauty of the area and formed the MGPO on my return,” she said.
She said the MGPO removed non-degradable pollutants, degradable pollutants, human waste and animal carcasses and helped raise awareness about the environment, hygiene and sanitation.
The MGPO, she said, has also established five campsites from Askole (the last village of Baltoro) to Concordia (the end point of the glacier and the base camp of K-2) for trekkers.
The MGPO has also hired guards to protect the wildlife and trained paramedics to help the local community.
The MGPO, she said, plans to establish a national park, build more campsites, provide clean drinking water to locals, set up health care centres, skill development centres, initiate forestation schemes, enhance agricultural output, improve the communication network, provide solar energy systems and initiate alternate income generation projects for the local population. staff report