Mount Everest is 2.8 feet taller as China and Nepal finally agree on the height of the world's highest peak

Mount Everest is 2.8 feet taller as China and Nepal finally agree on the height of the world's highest peak
Mount Everest is now 2.5 feet tallerNational Geographic
  • The height of Mount Everest has been revised from 8,848 metres to 8,848.86 metres.
  • This makes the world’s highest peak taller by 2.8 feet.
  • This is the first-ever joint statement by Nepal and China, the two countries that are home for the world’s highest peak.
The world’s highest peak just got a little taller. A joint survey by China and Nepal has concluded that the height of Mount Everest has is not 8,848 metres but 8,848.86 metres — an increase of 2.8 feet.

Not only is this monumental in the space of geography but it’s also first-ever joint announcement by Nepal and China — the two countries that share the grand expanse of the mountain.

Mount Everest is 2.8 feet taller as China and Nepal finally agree on the height of the world's highest peak
Mount Everest as seen from spaceNASA

It brings the disagreements between Nepal and China over Mount Everest’s exact height to an end. It also puts to rest the speculation by geologists that Mount Everest’s shrunk by a few centimetres after an earthquake, measuring 8.1 on the Richter scale, hit Nepal in 2015.
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China and Nepal’s differences over Mount Everest’s height:
CountryHeight of Mount Everest
China8,844.43 metres
Nepal8,848 metres
Joint agreement8,848.86 metres

China versus Nepal
Measuring the world’s highest peak is not an easy task. And, it doesn’t get easier when Mount Everest’s two homeland countries disagree over its height.

Mount Everest is 2.8 feet taller as China and Nepal finally agree on the height of the world's highest peak
Mount Everest's North Face toward TibetLuca Galuzzi/Wikimedia

The disagreement over the difference in the height of a little of three metres stemmed from a single question — whether to include the mountain's snowcap or limit its height to the rock base.
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Since Nepal’s measurement of the ‘Sagarmatha’ — what the locals call Mount Everest — agreed with India’s 1954 Survey, it became the global standard. This was bolstered by the fact that most other countries included the snowcap when measuring their peaks.

Mount Everest is 2.8 feet taller as China and Nepal finally agree on the height of the world's highest peak
View of Mount Everest on the border of Nepal and China looking north from NepalWikimedia

Mount Everest gets taller as other mountains shrink
Mount Everest isn’t the first peak to see its height revised but it’s probably the first to get taller rather than shrink.

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North America’s highest mountain, Denali — previously known as Mount McKinley — lost three metres when satellites took up the task to remeasure it in 2015. Sweden’s highest peak, the Kebnekaise mountain, has also been a victim of shrinkage, albeit due to climate change.

In New Zealand, Mount Cook lost 10 metres after an avalanche in 1991 wiped away its entire snow top. The height of Aconcagua in the Andes has also been reduced by a metre along with Australia’s Mount Kuscuiscko.

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