If you happen to live in a place in India that is a popular tourist destination, you know the ugly consequences attached with it. While tourists bring in development, they also end up disturbing local lives and resources.
Litter, Garbage Everywhere
According to a research, suffocating under layers of plastic, Mussoorie produces as much as 25-30 metric tones of waste every day. This is not even disposed of properly. Too many tourists and vehicles leave waste on the top of the hills, without caring to pick it up.
A popular campsite, about 9 kilometres from Bhagsunag, hosts over 1,00,000 tourists every year. They produce an enormous amount of waste. This can only be brought down on mules.
After gaining immense popularity in recent years, the hill station is attracting many tourists. They carry plastic products, throw them on the trekking trails and now you can find heaps of mess wherever you turn your head.
Trash Free Hills
Jodie Underhill, Founder, Waste Warriors, is from the United Kingdom. Known as the ‘Garbage Girl’, she has been working with her team in cleaning up the hills.
Pradeep Sangwan, a 33-year-old mountaineer from Gurugram has been cleaning Himalayan trek routes since 2016. He has collected more than 5,00,000 kilos of plastic from our pristine mountains. From March to November, Sangwan conducts cleanup drives at Shimla and Prashar Lake (Himachal Pradesh), Kheer Ganga Trek, Shrikhand Mahadev trek and Jogni Falls.
In another initiative by The Clean Mountains, people are handed a green bag on their trek to the Himalayas. They are asked to bring back plastic bottles, wrappers and whatever else they take along. There was around two tones of plastic waste on this path. But after this project, it is 90%-95% plastic free. Conducted in January here, they had set up another cleanup trek in Shivaganga Hills. They invite volunteers too through their social media pages.
So, We’re Saying
Tourism is supposed to boost the economy of these hill stations but it looks like it is them who are paying the price.
News Source: Times Of India, Hindustan Times