Melting glaciers are exposing bodies of dead explorers on Mount Everest

Melting glaciers are exposing bodies of dead explorers on Mount Everest
© Getty images

Melting glaciers on Mount Everest have begun exposing the bodies of dead hikers who died on the mountain.

Authorities have begun removing some of the estimated hundreds of bodies likely buried on the mountain, but say more and more are emerging due to global warming.

ADVERTISEMENT

"Because of global warming, the ice sheet and glaciers are fast melting and the dead bodies that remained buried all these years are now becoming exposed," former Nepal Mountaineering Association President Ang Tshering Sherpa told the BBC.

"We have brought down dead bodies of some mountaineers who died in recent years, but the old ones that remained buried are now coming out.”

He told CNN that his company has removed seven dead bodies since 2008. Another official told the BBC that he has retrieved about 10 dead bodies from Everest in recent years.

An estimated 300 or so climbers have died since the first summit attempt in 1922, and about two-thirds of those bodies are thought to still be on the mountain. Some bodies have even served as landmarks for climbers.

Experts told the BBC that the cost of removing dead bodies from Mount Everest can range from $40,000 to $80,000 and that getting government funding can take a long time.

Most of the newly exposed bodies have appeared on the surface of the Khumbu Glacier, where researchers have found evidence of rapid glacial melt and increasing temperatures, according to the BBC.

Nepal National Mountain Guides Association Treasurer Tenzeeng Sherpa told CNN that rescuers cannot bring down all of the bodies, but noted: “Those we can't bring down we respect by saying prayers for them and covering them with rock or snow."