August 13 2019  |  Fashion, Bags & Accessories

Peak waste: Bally launches long-term initiative to preserve mountains

By Mary Jane Pittilla

Bally sponsors a clean-up expedition on Mount Everest, reaching the Earth’s highest peak on May 21

This spring, Bally launched its Peak Outlook initiative to preserve the world’s most extreme mountain environments and their communities.

Introducing this long-term commitment, the Swiss luxury brand sponsored a critical clean-up expedition on Mount Everest, reaching the Earth’s highest peak on May 21.

During the challenging climbing season, the clean-up mission removed more than two tonnes of waste. Over half a tonne was collected in the Death Zone (above 8000m), where available oxygen is a quarter of what is needed to sustain the human body at sea level.

Led by Dawa Steven Sherpa and his team of experienced climbers and guides, all of whom are Sherpas native to Nepal’s high Himalayas, this clean-up effort, taking place from April to May, helped to restore the pristine landscape between Everest Base Camp (5,380m) and its peak (8,848m).

The initiative also engaged Jamling Tenzing Norgay, son of Sherpa Tenzing Norgay, who – while wearing Bally boots – made history in first reaching Mount Everest’s summit alongside Sir Edmund Hillary in 1953.

While previous clean-ups have been limited to areas between base camp and the mountain’s mid-point at Camp II (6,400m), Bally’s Peak Outlook expedition reached Everest’s summit.

To celebrate the launch of Bally Peak Outlook, the brand will introduce an exclusive capsule collection, where 100% of net proceeds will benefit future expeditions. The first capsule includes a Global Organic Textile Standard-certified organic cotton T-shirt, featuring the slogan No Mountain High Enough, available in stores and online, retailing at €95.

Long-standing relationship

Dawa Steven Sherpa, Leader, Eco Everest Expeditions and CEO, Asian Trekking, explained why he participated in Bally’s initiative: “When I first started climbing in 2007, I was shocked and saddened by the amount of waste abandoned in this magnificent landscape. The following year I made it my goal to pioneer a clean-up mission which to date has recovered over 19.5 tons of trash. Reaching the summit of Everest requires significant resources, so I was delighted when Bally came to our cause, aiding and supporting the first organized clean-up of Everest’s summit.”

As the climbing season drew to a close, Bally supported an additional Sherpa crew this June to remove discarded debris left behind by the last expedition teams.

This is the first time ever that a clean-up expedition has been initiated at the end of the season, collecting one tonne of abandoned waste.

Nepali mountain climber and author Jamling Tenzing Norgay played an important role in shaping Bally’s Peak Outlook initiative in the region, furthering the longstanding relationship between Bally, the Himalayas and the Norgay family.

Bally’s ties to Mount Everest date back to 1947, when the luxury brand supplied the Swiss expedition with custom, rubber-soled footwear. Tenzing Norgay wore his Bally reindeer boots during the first successful summit of Mount Everest with Sir Edmund Hillary in 1953.

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