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News In Brief

Saving Himalayas from overpopulation and litter

Nepal, West Germany, and Switzerland have joined UNESCO in forming a body to save the Himalayan and Hindu Kush Mountains from the ravages of a booming population, overgrazing animals, and litterbug mountaineers.

The mountains are home to 30 million people, with 350 million more living in adjoining valleys and plains.

The booming population is causing accelerated deforestation; overgrazing by sheep and cattle is causing erosion; and the mountains' peaks are fast becoming rubbish dumps as climbers discard refuse that does not decay in the low temperatures.

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