Nepal seeks int’l support to settle dispute over height of Mt Everest

Nepali authorities have sought international community’s help to resolve the controversy over the height of Mt. Everest as the official measurements adopted by Nepal and China over the years do not match.

“Since we lack the capacity to do the job on our own, we are preparing a project plan with the request for donors and we will soon be sending them out,” Krishna Raj BC, director general of Nepal’s Survey Department, told BBC News, informing that the three-year project was getting underway finally.

According to him, funding and technology have been the main constraints. “We don’t have, for instance, the equipment that works in a place with -45C temperature,” he said, adding, “We basically need data from gravity instruments, levelling points and the global positioning system (GPS) to get a complete picture.

“For all these technologies to work, first there has to be infrastructure in places like the Everest base camp, and then we need to mobilise Sherpas up and down the mountain with someone who can handle all those technologies,” the official explained, “And then finally, the data will have to be processed in such a way that it will be acceptable to the international scientific community.”

China has been arguing that the world’s highest mountain was nearly 4m shorter than Nepal’s official figure (8,848m) and that it should counted up to the rock surface.

The measurement of the word’s tallest peak was first taken in 1856 while the height of 8,848m was accepted officially after an Indian survey in 1955. nepalnews.com

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