Residents gear for Mt Phon Kan Razi clean-up
A Campaign to clean up Mt Phon Kan Razi in Puta-o township of Kachin State will be launched next month to make the icy mountainous region more conducive to tourism.
The first stage of the campaign will start on November 2 at the mountain, which is about 50 miles from Puta-o, but the town provides the easiest access and safest route to the mountain, which has become a major tourist attraction in the country.
With the rapid spread of technology and the internet in the country, the icy region has become famous around the world and is expected to boost Myanmar’s tourism industry and create more jobs for people in the area.
“But there will be challenges, like rubbish and pollution. That is why we are preparing to reduce those risks for future generations,” U Moe Min Thein of the Snow Mountain Clean and Green Association, which is spearheading the campaign, said.
The snow-capped mountainous region in northern Myanmar is where much of the country’s fresh water originate. Despite an increasing number of tourists every year, travel to the area has been restricted since December 2016.
“This is one of the most untouched places in Southeast Asia,” said U Moe Min Thein.
The campaign will focus on picking up and hauling away rubbish, choosing locations for garbage bins, educating villagers in the area about proper rubbish disposal, distributing literature on proper disposal, studying whether toilets can be built in camps along the hiking path, and surveying water sources for overnight camps.
“Climbers on the mountain will cook and eat food, so there is going to be trash. To encourage tour businesses to practice responsible tourism, we will carry out education programmes,” said U Shine Min Zaw of the Kachin State Wildlife Conservation Society, which is part of the campaign.
Besides being an eyesore, careless rubbish disposal can cause soil depletion, damage flora, and pollute water sources.
“To maintain the snowy mountain region’s beauty, everyone’s help is needed,” said U Moe Min Thein.
The association, which was formed in August, comprises residents, travel agencies and conservation organisations. It aims to educate people about conservation and establish waste disposal systems, among others.