Why will Mount Everest's height be re-measured?

Vikas SV

New Delhi, Oct 14: Eversince the 2015 Nepal earthquake, which measured 7.6 on the Richter Scale and left the Himalayan nation devastated, there have been speculations that the height of Mount Everest may have changed.

Some geologists opine that April 2015 earthquake may have shrunk the Mount Everest's height by about three centimetres.

Currently, the officially recognised height of Mount Everest is 8,848 metres or 29,029 feet. This is recognised by China and Nepal, and was established by a 1955 Indian survey which was subsequently confirmed by a Chinese survey in 1975.

Many geologists have argued that the magnitude 7.6 earthquake that jolted Nepal may have shrunk the Mount Everest's height.

According to The New York Times article, teams from around the world, including China, Denmark, Italy, India and the United States, have come up with other calculations, which have sometimes strayed a little bit higher, or a little bit lower, than that figure.

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Italy, in 1992, lopped seven feet off the standard height, measuring it at 29,022 feet. In 1999, a measurement by American scientists pushed the peak a little higher, saying the mountain reached 29,035 feet, The New York Times article further said.

Information from global positioning instruments in place on Everest since the late 1990s indicates that the mountain continues to move a few inches to the northeast and rise a fraction of an inch each year, says Encyclopedia Britannica.

India was the first country under Sir George Everest's leadership as 'Surveyor General of India' to have declared the height of Mount Everest and establish it as the highest peak in the world in the year 1855.

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Subsequently, India once again carried out the exercise and declared the height of Mount Everest in the year 1956. After the Gorkha Earth Quake in the year 2015, various doubts were raised by the scientific community. In response to this, the Survey of India proposed re-measuring the height of Mount Everest as an 'Indo-Nepal Joint Scientific Exercise' along with Survey department of Nepal.

Nepal, China agree to re-measure Mount Everest:

Nepal and China have agreed to jointly re-measure the height of Mount Everest, amidst reports that the world's highest peak may have shrunk after the massive earthquake that shook the Himalayan nation in 2015.

In 2017, India had also proposed to Nepal help in re-measuring the height of Mount Everest.

The decision to jointly re-measure the height of Mt. Everest was taken after Chinese President Xi Jinping held talks with his Nepalese counterpart Bidya Devi Bhandari and Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli here during the weekend.

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