The next time someone asks you to take the trash out, don’t make a big deal about it. Because, as Namgyal Sherpa will tell you, at least you don’t have to climb a mountain to take out the garbage. Namgyal is leading a team of 20 sherpas who, come May 1st, will be climbing up to the world’s highest garbage dump–on Mount Everest.
The Nepalese mountain climbers will trek to above 26,000 feet to an area known as the “death zone” due to its lack of oxygen, Reuters reports. Once there, they’ll gather up the trash left behind by previous expeditions.
The Mount Everest spring cleaning trip is expected to yield tons of garbage like food wrappings, torn tents, and discarded oxygen bottles left between an area called South Col at 26,000 feet and the summit at 29,035 feet. The sherpas also hope to bring back the dead bodies of three mountaineers who were killed in the death zone, and plan to cremate them near the base camp.
One astronaut’s trash is another state’s treasure. That’s the message from California as the Golden State officially registered a collection of 106 objects left behind on the moon by the Apollo 11 mission as a state historical resource. The collection encompasses about 5,000 pounds of objects, including the bottom stage of the lunar lander and the American flag planted on the moon’s surface by astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin.
And it’s not just the tools and the flag–California has also claimed custody of bags of human waste left behind.
The San Francisco Chronicle reports on the logic behind the unusual decision:
The first landing on the moon by humans, on July 20, 1969, was “one of the most historical events in the last 100 to 200 years,” said Jay Correia, a historian with the Historical Resources Commission. California had a major role in developing the technology that made the trip to the moon possible.